I want to invite you along on a journey that two followers of Jesus take after that first Easter. You can read the story here: Luke 24: 13-35, NIV.
Cleopas and his companion were feeling disappointment and discouragement – and all those other D words – doubt, defeat, despair—as they trudged down the road towards Emmaus. The One they had worshipped had been made to suffer the most humiliating death possible. Only a week before, their hopes had risen to fever pitch when the crowds welcomed Jesus into the holy city with cries of “Hosanna”. But now? The cruelty of the cross—not to mention these strange stories suggesting Jesus might be alive?! It’s more than they can grasp.
As they are walking back home, a stranger joins them. We know it’s Jesus, but they don’t. “What are you discussing?” he asks them. Stunned that this man hasn’t heard the news from Jerusalem, they tell him all about Jesus’ life and death and then they utter what are perhaps the 3 saddest words in Scripture: We had hoped. We had hoped Jesus was the one to redeem us. We had hoped He would be the One to save us.
They reach Emmaus and in the tradition of mid-eastern hospitality, they beg the stranger to stay and break bread with them. And then everything changes: “When Jesus was at the table with them, he took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them. And their eyes were opened, and they recognized him.”
As soon as they recognize Jesus, he disappears—but they know now that He is risen. They know now that he was walking alongside them all the time. And that’s all they needed to know.
For the two men from Emmaus, hope had passed them by. And then Jesus came looking for them, just likes he comes looking for you and for me. Jesus walked alongside them.
So, if you’re on the Emmaus road—the road of doubt and discouragement—take heart, be prayerful, and keep your eyes open. Because soon you will discover that Jesus is walking right there beside you.
On the Journey with you,
P.S. If you are a Liberty member currently serving in a medical or first responder capacity during this crisis, could you please send me your name? ([email protected]/ Attn. Pastor Becky) I would like to pray for you by name in worship on the 26th of April.
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