April 13, 2017

Take a look at your hands. Maybe they’re holding this devotional in one hand and a cup of coffee in the other, or maybe they’re holding your smartphone as you read this online. Think about where your hands have been, what they’ve done, who they’ve helped, how they’ve folded when you prayed, and the history they exhibit with each line, curve, or scar.
The story of the Last Supper has always been compelling to me. Passover was an annual celebration wherein thousands of Jews would flood into Jerusalem to offer sacrifices at the temple and remember their exit from slavery in Egypt. Exodus describes God’s direction to the Jews to mark their doors with blood of a lamb so the plague would pass over their house, sparing the lives of their firstborn children. This is one of the most famous stories of the Old Testament, and was brought full circle on the evening of the Last Supper.
With His disciples, Jesus shared a powerful evening that shaped the way we live out our faith today. Even knowing what would happen, knowing of Judas’s betrayal, Jesus knelt down and washed the feet of the Disciples. He shared with them a Passover meal. He demonstrated the first Holy Communion. He showed the Disciples unconditional love, even in the face of what was to come the next day.
Jesus’ death became the new Passover. His blood covered our sins so that we would know God’s grace in our lives. The same hands that performed miracles, that washed the Disciples’ feet, that broke bread saying, “This is my body, broken for you,” and held the cup saying, “This is my blood, shed for you,” also carried the cross. The same hands that have prayed for you and for many were also pierced on the cross. His hands cover us. His love redeems us. Even while we are fragile, while we are sinners, His grace is poured out for us.
Beth Armstrong, Director of Welcoming Ministry