“Become More Christlike through the Sacrament,” New Era, Jan. 2019, 48–49.
The symbolism of the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper is beautiful to contemplate. The bread and water represent the flesh and blood of Him who is the Bread of Life and the Living Water (see John 4:10), poignantly reminding us of the price He paid to redeem us. As the bread is broken, we remember the Savior’s torn flesh. As we drink the water, we think of the blood He shed in Gethsemane and on the cross and its sanctifying power (see Moses 6:60).
But figuratively eating His flesh and drinking His blood has a further meaning, and that is to internalize the qualities and character of Christ. As we partake of the sacramental bread and water each week, we would do well to consider how fully and completely we must incorporate His character and the pattern of His sinless life into our life and being. Jesus could not have atoned for the sins of others unless He Himself was sinless. Since justice had no claim on Him, He could offer Himself in our place to satisfy justice and then extend mercy.
Partaking of the Savior’s flesh and drinking His blood means to put out of our lives anything inconsistent with a Christlike character and to make His attributes our own. This is the larger meaning of repentance: not only a turning away from past sin but also “a turning of the heart and will to God” going forward (see Bible Dictionary, “Repentance”). God will show us our flaws and failings, but He will also help us turn weakness into strength (see Ether 12:27). If we sincerely ask, “What lack I yet?” (Matthew 19:20), He will not leave us to guess, but in love He will answer for the sake of our happiness. And He will give us hope.