spiritual giants my Papa

First Communion & Spiritual Giants

Every believer I’ve ever known has doctrine that gets them fired up. I’m not talking about fighting over predestination or the end times. I’m talking about people who are really into the symbolism of baptism, the doctrine of sanctification, or people who get really nerdy about Melchizedek and Christophany vs theophany.

I have a lot of these little hot spots that get me excited, but one that is specifically meaningful to me is the Lord’s Supper. The spiritual implications of communion bring me to tears almost every time I partake in it. It is deeply meaningful to me and I don’t take it lightly.

Most Baptist churches take communion on a schedule. For my church, that schedule has always been quarterly. Even though quarterly is only four times a year, it’s still easy to drink your juice, eat your cracker, and move on with your life.

Spiritual Giants

My passion for the Lord’s Supper and other doctrine didn’t happen by accident though. It all started long before I ever accepted Christ. I was surrounded by giants of the faith and God used them to teach me the importance of scripture. They showed me the gospel long before I knew what it was.

Many people in my life have been spiritual pillars and I’d venture to say that most of them have no idea. My youth pastor and his wife, Mrs. Stacy, Mrs. Renee, the Kims, Cleve, Mrs. Donna, and so many family members. None of these names or titles mean anything to most of you but to me, they mean the world. Of all the people who have been godly examples for me, there is one man who stands out the most.

My Papa

When I think about my grandfather’s life a thousand different stories come to mind. I think about how he always called me baby doll, or how when he was trying to get my attention he’d call out “hey Ms. Lauren” in his deep sing-song voice. I think about the times he came to Troy just because he missed me and the hundreds of stories he told me as we drove around the state together. He had a story for everything and I’m sure I never heard them all.

I have so many wonderful memories of Papa, but there is one that I cherish most and it’s the part of the reason I have such a deep love for the Lord’s Supper.

The Lord’s Supper

My very first communion happened just shortly after I became a Christian at the ripe old age of 7. I was so excited to get to take part in it, but I had no idea what communion was or why we did it. I was just excited to be like the grownups.

That day, I sat tucked under my Papa’s arm as they passed the plate with the bread and the juice. I held the tiny cracker in between my equally tiny fingers as he told me the significance of each element. He explained to me that I need to examine my heart before God when taking communion and led me in prayer.

Who Are You Impacting?

Papa didn’t have to take the time to explain everything to me that Sunday. He could have just let me partake and listen to the preacher and that would have been okay, but he took the opportunity to teach me and it has impacted me greatly.

I encourage you (and myself) to be intentional with the people around you, especially the younger Christians in your life. Even if you don’t realize it, they’re watching and you’re having an impact on them. Let’s do everything we can to be a positive spiritual influence and to take advantage of opportunities to share what God has taught us.

I pray I’m able to share my love for the Lord and impact others the same way my Papa did for me.