It’s not fall until I make an apple pie. Funny, though, it’s probably the only apple pie I will make the whole year. Not because I don’t like it. I just think it’s a whole lot of trouble. Skinning and paring apples is hard work. And making pie dough—well, I just can’t seem to master that art.
Despite the hindrances, today I made two yummy apple pies from scratch. We had David’s parents and his grandmother over for lunch, along with Brandt, Laura and baby Eli. For the first time, Eli met his great, great grandmother--five generations! (Grandma is 92, lives alone, cooks and cleans for herself, and makes amazing pies of all varieties.)
When I think of apple pie, I think of fall, David’s grandma and my own grandma. When I was a little girl, I would go over to my grandmother’s house quite often. She was a fabulous cook. From her kitchen, wafts of cinnamon, apples and butter would migrate through the house to the front room where I would play. And every time grandma baked apple pies, she would have leftover crust that she would roll out, spread with butter and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar and bake for me. It was my very own special pie.
Not only did I taste apple pie today, I tasted a little nostalgia. As the sweet, cinnamony apples and buttery, flaky crust melted in my mouth, I connected with powerful and wonderful recollections of my grandmother. It's impossible for me to eat apple pie and not think of her. And when I do, I remember how very much I loved her.
Perhaps that is why Jesus asked us, whenever we eat bread or drink wine, to remember him. He understood the power that food has to form indelible memories--ones that create continuity and give weight to our lives. Tomorrow morning, many of us will receive communion. But how many of us will be thoughtful about it? Will we really stop and think about Jesus and how very much we love him? Will we "do this in remembrance of him"?
Here are a few suggestions to help you taste communion:
- Before you take communion, think back over your life with Christ and thank him for two or three really great memories from your life with him.
- When you receive the elements, don't be in a hurry. Slowly taste each one and let it "sit" in your mouth for several seconds before you swallow. Then tell him how much you love him.
- As you take communion, be aware of the community around and remember the church around the world--all receiving the bread and cup in Jesus' name. Imagine yourself as part of the gathering of the universal church.