In Taking God Seriously: Vital Things We Need to Know, J. I. Packer says that during the Lord’s Supper, our thoughts of love should be focused in four directions.
We should reflect on Christ as he reigns right now at the right hand of the Father. He is
our Redeemer-ruler, our sovereign Savior, the supplier and sustainer of our peace, love, joy, and strength, and as the sender of the Holy Spirit to generate within us, in union with himself, the fullness of our newness of life.
The Lord’s Supper is an opportunity to praise and thank the ascended Lord Jesus for interceding for us and and feeding us.
Paul’s instructs us that in the Lord’s Supper, we “proclaim the Lord’s death.”
Christ’s transcendent achievement by his death on the cross must ever be central in our remembrance of and communion with him who is now our risen Lord and our true host at his table… . Glorying in the cross … should be part of each Christian’s mental and spiritual exercise as we come to receive the bread and wine.
As we partake, we should contemplate Calvary and everything Jesus achieved for us there.
The Communion table points us forward, too, to the future coming of the Lord. As we partake in the bread and wine “we proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.”
[C]ommunion with the Father and the Son in prayer no will bring joy, but the joy will be greater in heaven, where each of us will simultaneously receive Jesus’s full attention … and we shall see him face to face, and our fellowship of love with him will be unimaginably close and rich.
In the Lord’s Supper, we should anticipate our future with him forever.
We are members of the spiritual body of Christ, and in the Lord’s Supper, we partake with the other members of the body. The Lord’s Supper is a family meal, strengthening our bond with the other family members, and reminding us that, as a body (or family), our purpose is loving service to our Lord, our fellow-believers, and needy people outside of the body.
[A]s we share in the Supper, we should be asking ourselves, and asking the Lord Jesus to show us, what human needs we should devote ourselves to serving once our Eucharist service is over and we have scattered back into the wider world.
Packer urges us to “reconsecrate ourselves at each Communion service” to serve those around us.
My mind tends to wander more than I’d like during the Lord’s Supper, and I’m hoping these four directions to circumscribe my communing in love (to use Pacter’s language) will give direction to my meditation.