And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
One of the amazing and curious parts of serving as a Vicar is having the honor of leading worship - specifically communion. From the great thanksgiving to the preface to the words of institution and the invitation to the table; all of me becomes caught up in this beautiful and mysterious sacrament.
Each Sunday as I pass out the bread and say, "The body of Christ - given for you." I'm amazed to hear these words coming from out of my mouth. It was something I longed to share with others for so long and now, suddenly, it's a weekly part of the worship experience that I have the honor to help facilitate.
This is an amazing fact.
There are times, in spite of my internal wonderment, that this practice starts to become more familiar and comfortable - like this is the place I'm meant to be.
Then there are time that the wonderment of communion is over the top and its all I can do to look at each face, share the bread or a blessing and step on the the next set of eyes and hands saying, "This is the body of Christ, given for you...".
For the little children that do not yet take communion, I usually make the sign of the cross on their forehead or rest my hand gently on their shoulder and say, "The Lord bless you and keep you . The Lord make his face to shine upon you and give you peace always."
Last week I said these words as I held the tiny hand of a two year old girl. Her eyes were wide as if she was hanging on each word. She smiled a bit and started to speak as I completed her blessing...
"PEACE ALWAYS!" she boldly replied.
Her words hit my heart and all of the internal wonder of that moment hung in the air with the echo of her words in my ears..."PEACE ALWAYS".
In the midst of all of life's sorrows, God's peace always. Yes I know the sorrows and pains of life are often more then my own heart can bear - but God's peace is always present.
In the mess.
In the loss
and even in moments of wonderment - God's peace always is and always is peace.
This is a blessing we all need to hold fast to.