Thursday, April 20, 2006

XXIII

I know there are obvious differences between our contemporary evangelical understanding of the Eucharist and Cyril's, however, in Lecture XXIII something he said caught me somewhat off guard.

XXIII.21--In approaching therefore, come not with they wrists extended, or thy fingers spread; but make thy left hand a throne for the right, as for that which is to receive a King. And having hollowed thy palm, receive the Body of Christ, saying over it, Amen.--giving heed lest thou lose any portion thereof; for whatever thou losest, is evidently a loss to thee as it were from one of thine own members. For tell me, if any one gave thee grains of gold, wouldest thou not hold them with all carefulness, being on thy guard against losing any of them, and suffering loss?

I would like to think that our evangelical view, though different from Cyril's, is just as high and respectful as this early theologian's. Yet, I must admit, based solely upon my actions, this is not the case. For instance, when a crumb falls on my slacks or on the pew, I brush that wee little piece of bread onto the ground; I'm sure we've all done this and done so candidly. I kind of feel aweful thinking about it, fearing that it illustrates my overarching care and demeanor towards God's grace in general. The question isn't whether or not I approach God's grace haphazardly, I already know that I do. The real question is whether or not I'm going to stop? Will I continue to brush crumb-blessings onto the floor because I am content with my much larger and satisfying bread-blessings, or, will I do the right thing and consider every bread, crumb, element, etc--to be a good gift from the Lord?

1 Comments:

Blogger dannyboy said...

Well put. It is parts like this that get me thinking about the connection between spiritual and physical actions. There seems to be so much physical actions talked about by Cyril that pertain to either symbolizing or actually being a part of a spiritual action. I think often in today's society some of these things are easily veiwed as dead rituals and that spiritualality is split from anyhting earthly. Physical participation in church has been reduced mainly to merely standing up to sing in many churches. Other things such as baptism, communion and annointing with oil are so seldom done or discussed that when they are done, atleast for me, it is hard to put great significance in. And this is sad. Wether or not actually doing this with my body quarilates with things spiritually
(which I do not see why they couldn't be), at the very least it helps my focus and makes my mind more concious, as I can relate better with things I can see to things I cannot.

3:58 PM  

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