Day 5

When Jesus Gave Thanks

from the Give Thanks reading plan

Matthew 15:35-37, Luke 10:21-24, John 11:39-44, Luke 22:14-20

BY Guest Writer

Scripture Reading: Matthew 15:35-37, Luke 10:21-24, John 11:39-44, Luke 22:14-20

One of my pastors often quotes the Heidelberg Catechism before we receive communion: “As assuredly as I receive from the hands of the minister, and taste with my mouth the bread and cup of the Lord, as certain signs of the body and blood of Christ.” When the bread crumbles in my mouth and the wine washes it down, I think, This is how sure I am that Christ is who He says He is. For a chronic doubter like me, it has been a grace to view communion in this way.

I often think of the disciples at that first communion, when Jesus took the bread, gave thanks for it, broke it, and gave it to them, saying what must have been cryptic words to the disciples, who didn’t have the advantage of hindsight we do. For them, this seemed an ordinary Passover meal. They didn’t yet know that their Father had been foretelling the story of their Messiah every year for generations.

There was another meal where Jesus took bread, gave thanks before breaking it and giving it to many, with so many leftovers they filled seven basketfuls (Matthew 15:35–37). Jesus was preaching the gospel in this meal, too, a foretaste of the last supper to come. He was showing them how breaking bread would never be the same again—not because the bread was extraordinary, but because the Blesser of it was.

In both meals, Jesus was showing His disciples that broken things aren’t the end of the story. He was essentially saying: I give thanks for the breaking about to come, because I know there is a bounty to follow you can’t even imagine.

When you next take communion, I encourage you to feel the breaking of the bread in your mouth, to taste every crumb. And I encourage you to thank your Father, as Jesus did, knowing this mere meal points to a gospel more real than you can imagine, and a feast more bountiful than you could ever supply on your own.


Lore Ferguson Wilbert is a writer, thinker, and learner. She blogs at Sayable, and tweets and instagrams at @lorewilbert. She has a husband named Nate, a puppy named Harper Nelle, and too many books to read in one lifetime.

Post Comments (35)

35 thoughts on "When Jesus Gave Thanks"

  1. Melissa Yingling says:

    It wasn’t until recently that communion became an emotional thing for me. Before, I took bread and wine, thanked Jesus, and went about my day. But now? Now I truly FEEL the sacrifice. I truly FEEL the hurt and pain that was experienced so that I may be set free. Knowing these things completely overwhelms me. There is nothing I’ve done to deserve this. Yet it happened. I spend time in sincere and connected prayer, completely overcome by emotions. I don’t think there are any words of thanks that would ever truly emulate exactly how much of it I have ❤️ praise Jesus!

  2. Kristina Domansky says:

    Our pastor just preached that when Jesus gets ready to show thanks for you, get ready to be broken, poured out, get out of your comfort zone, and be a witness.

    1. Melissa Yingling says:

      I love this so much! Thanks for sharing!

    2. Heather Nistler (MNmomma) says:

      this hit me hard this morning…thank you!!

    3. Lauren Decker says:


  3. Kelly Singletary says:


  4. Adelyn Rose says:

    Thank you Lord for giving yourself for me.

  5. Lindsey Bailey says:

    Pouring and breaking and believing. The symbolism of these reminds me what the life of a believer should perhaps look like. It is a constant emptying, giving away and breaking. Those called to ministry and leadership are always prepared through breaking and hardship. But, that experience can be used to fortify those around us going through similar situations and so we empty ourselves in order to point others to the salvation of Christ. Our belief fortifies another one’s belief. Pouring and breaking and believing. Jesus.

    1. Barb Dolny says:


  6. Christy says:

    The gospel in broken bread: “I give thanks for the breaking about to come, because I know there is a bounty to follow you can’t even imagine.” Thank you God, for allowing us to partake of the bounty of your Son’s brokeness!

  7. Kristen says:

    Thank You, Jesus for your love, obedience, and sacrifice. You lived the perfect life we could never live, and showed us how to live and how to treat others. You died the death I deserve. I know this in my head, but help me to really grasp the depths of my sin, because then I will truly know the joy of the price paid for me. I know that when struck with that reality, I’d be face down in the ground. But, I have done the comparison game thinking my sins aren’t that bad. However, in front of a Holy God my sins are that bad. All have sinned and fallen short. I want to live in awe of You, and let that guide my actions and thoughts. Please help me and change my heart that is be prideful. In Jesus’ Name amen

    1. Catherine Minshall says:

      Thank you for this inspiring prayer, Kristen.

  8. Rocio says:

    I can’t remember the last time I took communion.. But I can still remember the feeling of grace and peace..
    Thank you Lord for always loving me..

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