You may think that only “professionals” can lead a communion service, but the Bible does not teach this idea. In 1 Corinthians 11:23-26, the apostle Paul teaches us that Jesus instituted the Lord’s Supper as a way for us to remember him and proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes back.
There is no description of this only being for professionals. The Lord’s Supper is a gift for every Christian to share in community with others. In this age of COVID-19, your community of others is more than likely limited to your immediate family. Can you think of a better time than Easter to proclaim the Lord’s death to your family? Here are some practical ways to share the Lord’s Supper as a family.
Prepare your family.
Let everyone in the family know you plan to share Communion together as a family. Good Friday seems like a great day to do this.
Prepare the elements you will need.
Go to the grocery store and buy the following elements (note: these may be different than your faith tradition, so adapt accordingly):
- Crackers or bread
- Grape juice
When it comes time for your Communion service, have small cups or glasses and pour the juice into them (enough for each person in your family). Break the bread or crackers apart into smaller pieces so there is enough for everyone.
Prepare for the Lord’s Supper
Decide ahead of time some Bible verses you may read during the Communion time. Some ideas include:
- John 18:1-40, John 19:1-42, John 20:1-31
- Isaiah 53:1-12
- Romans 5:12-21
- Hebrews 9:11-28
Participate in the Lord’s Supper
- Pray – Invite God to come and bless your time together as a family. Ask him to help you experience how much he loves you and how great his sacrifice was.
- Remind – Remind your family this was established by Jesus as a way for his followers to remember what Jesus has done for them. This is a unique celebration reserved only for those who believe in Jesus for the forgiveness of their sins.
- Read – Take the time to read the Bible together. If your children are younger, it may mean using a Bible storybook. For everyone else in your home, take time reading the Bible verses together. Give everyone a chance to read, so they all participate.
- Reflect – Give everyone a piece of paper and ask them to write down every sin they can remember being guilty of over the past few days.
- Remind – Remind your family that these sins separate us from God, other people, and bring harm to our lives. Ask this question – how does Jesus’ death impact all of the sin on our lists?
- Pass the bread around. Ask this question. What does the bread represent? What did Jesus do with his body in our place? Remind everyone that we are now going to take the bread to remember his body given for us. Ask your family to pause after they take the bread and give a short, quiet prayer thanking Jesus for giving his body. You can say something like: “eat the bread and remember what Jesus has done for you.”
- Pass the juice around. Ask this question. What does the juice represent? Why is this important? (note: see Hebrews 9:22). Repeat the same pattern of asking your family to pause and giving them instructions when it is time to drink the juice.
- Celebrate. On the back of the piece of paper, have everyone write “It is Finished!” Then destroy the paper that has your list of sins as a reminder of how complete God’s forgiveness is.
- Pray – Ask God to help your family to always remember how great God’s love is for them. If you want some help, read Ephesians 1:17-19 as a final prayer for your time together.
Your church may be celebrating The Lord’s Supper online this Easter. If it is, then I certainly encourage you to participate together as a family with others who are part of God’s family. This was the standard pattern shown to us in the Bible. However, nothing is stopping you from taking the time to share the Lord’s Supper as a family in your own home.
Easter is a significant time. Let’s not allow COVID-19 to stop us from celebrating Jesus.