By Pastor Lisa

I was in 7th grade and receiving holy communion for the first time, I felt the wine burn down my throat and thought it was the Holy Spirit. I suppose I should say I thought it felt like the Holy Spirit, but I really did imagine the Holy Spirit burning down my throat.

When I was still a young teen, I went to a Baptist worship service with a friend. They passed the bread and wine of holy communion to each other in the pew. When I took the little cup from the tray and drank it, my throat closed around itself, and my mind shouted, “What is this?” It didn’t taste bad, but it didn’t taste like wine. I realized quickly it was grape juice. All was fine. I was just surprised.

When I was in seminary in St Paul, I came back to my pew after receiving holy communion in chapel and said to a friend, “Do you ever feel like going back for seconds?” She said, “Yes!” The bread and wine tasted so satisfying I wanted more. More Jesus.

What does the grace of God taste like? For Christians, it tastes like a wafer or piece of bread and a sip of wine or grape juice. God uses our five senses to reveal God’s love and forgiveness to us. God created us as physical beings and became a physical being in Jesus. God knows we need physical, tangible reminders of God’s grace. God gave us the bread and wine of holy communion, so we can taste God’s presence.

When I was in college, I went to Lutheran Campus Ministry at Fresno State. I had entered a period in my life when I did not believe Jesus was in any way God. I still went to worship, but I couldn’t say the creed. And I told myself I would not take holy communion. Yet each time the bread and wine came to me, I ate and drank. For some reason, I could not refuse this offering. Tasting God’s faithfulness during that time is probably one of the reasons I am still a Christian and a pastor as well.

Join us this Lenten season for our near-daily devotion, part of

“The Brush of Angel Wings” Sensing God’s Love.