Tonight I challenge you to go through this little Bible analysis, whether it is easy for you or not. Particularly if you are not as comfortable with the idea of it. Challenges cause growth, right? Don’t worry, it’s short, sweet, and pretty darn simple.
In Luke 24:13-35, we read of the famous story about Jesus’ appearance to two men on the road to Emmaus. They had left Jerusalem and were discussing the “big news” of the day – and that was about the man Jesus who had performed all of these wondrous miracles, done great deeds, healed sick and drove out demons, was brought to trial, died on the cross, and then was buried. Yet the big “breaking news” was that earlier that morning, the tomb where Jesus had been laid was empty. According to messengers of The Lord, he had risen.
The key to this story is that while they were on the road, Jesus was walking with them and talking to them, and they didn’t realize it. They were so caught up with talking about the news that they had no idea the Savior was the one listening to their stories! In fact, Jesus prompted them, asking more questions, and they went on and on.
I think that we can learn SO much from a story such as this. These men were basically reveling in gossip – they were so excited over the news of the day that they didn’t realize that they were walking with Jesus himself! It shows how absorbed they must have been, and we learn of how much their ignorance cost them. It took them until Jesus broke bread with them that evening when they finally figured out how blind they had been. “When he was at table with them, he took bread, gave thanks, broke it and began to give it to them. Then, their eyes were opened and they recognized him, and he disappeared from their sight.” (Luke 24:30-31)
How often are we so deeply absorbed in what we are doing that we fail to realize the Godliness that surrounds us? Even more scary, how many times is Jesus walking right next to us in disguise, and we don’t see him? What are we even looking for? Perhaps it would be wise for all of us to take a day where we make the concrete goal of recognizing Jesus’ face in the crowd – or even in the faces of those who we walk with every day. How much differently will we see the world when our eyes are opened to the realistic possibility of God walking with us? And then we too, would have our eyes opened and understand. I pray that we all find time to reflect on this challenge. Where are we on our own roads to Emmaus? Are we so focused on the destination that we don’t appreciate the journey? Are we aware of our surroundings so as to recognize the living God? How much do we really know about where we are going?