The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, "Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!"
Several weeks ago, my husband, Danny, and I are in Costco to purchase some routine items such as coffee and paper towels. He decides, since we are already here, to peruse the meat section to see if he can find a bargain on items we usually purchase at our local Publix. To his surprise, and mine, Danny returns to our cart carrying an item in which we've never once indulged.
"Look at this, Martha!" Danny declares excitedly. "It's boneless leg of lamb! Costs a fortune at Publix, but what a deal I found here."
"You've never cooked one of those before, have you?" I ask hesitantly, still thinking the lamb is on the pricey side.
"No, but there's a first time for everything," Danny assures me. "If I do some research on the Internet, I know I can roast this lamb to perfection. I can't walk away from this. It's practically a steal!"
So we proceed to the checkout with a new culinary challenge in the offing. As we head for home, I try to recall anything about the taste of lamb. I can't. No memories whatsoever. I begin to wonder if I've ever tried it. But when I place the first succulent and aromatic morsel into my mouth, I know I've never had it; I've never tasted anything more delectable and pleasing to the palate. Chef Danny has, once again, outdone himself!
As I savor each bite of the lamb, I am suddenly made aware of why the lamb, young and sweet and tender, was the sacrifice of choice in the ancient Jewish tradition. It stands head and shoulders above any other meat one could consume. And if it so pleasing to man, it stands to reason that people assumed it would be just as pleasing to God.
And I am reminded, too, of the Last Supper. This is my body . . .This is my blood . . . Do this in remembrance of me. Jesus, who understood every facet of our human nature, associated His sacrifice for us with our most basic needs: food and drink. Physical manifestations of His spiritual grace. Daily reminders of His presence with us. That we might share in communion with Him at every meal.
The leg of lamb? Expensive!
The Lamb of God? Priceless!
Is it your tradition to say a blessing at every meal?
Prayer: Father, let us give thanks for the nourishment You provide for us, recalling Jesus' Last Supper with His disciples. Make us ever mindful of Christ's sacrifice for our sins that we might live reconciled to You. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.