THURSDAY 16th APRIL 2020
There were two of us, walking together, walking away from it all;
Walking and talking, no.....more than talking......arguing,
Arguing and almost falling out.
We agreed on what happened, we knew what had happened,
We were there.
But what did it mean?
The kind of revolution we had wanted was not what we were given.
And, if he had set Israel free,
Why was he not around to proclaim its liberation?
So, it was good to have the company of a stranger,
Who was as interested in current affairs as ourselves.
It was good to have somebody to make sense of our confusion,
Draw together the loose ends we had forgotten.
Though it wasn’t until we sat down to share a meal,
That our confusion really ended, when his feeding of us began.
You will have guessed from that short meditation what our resurrection appearance is today.
The wonderful account of the Road to Emmaus, where a stranger meets two companions on the road on Easter Sunday eve.
It comes to us in the gospel of Luke chapter 24:13-35.
The two companions are despondent, their hopes for a new future shattered with the death of Jesus.
They head for home. Even though there has been news that Jesus has been raised from dead, their traumatized minds cannot take it in.
As they journey, they share with one another the events of the past few days.
As they are discussing it all, a stranger joins them on the road.
He asks them what has happened, and they tell him.............he listens..............and then he speaks,
Then Jesus said to them,
“How foolish you are, how slow you are to believe everything the prophets said! Was it not necessary for the Messiah to suffer these things and then to enter his glory?”
And Jesus explained to them what was said about himself in all the Scriptures, beginning with the books of Moses and the writings of all the prophets.
Jesus told his travelling companions things that they already knew to be true, it’s just in their confusion and sorrow, they had forgotten.
All though would become very clear a short time later for,
As they came near the village to which they were going, Jesus acted as if he were going farther; but they held him back, saying, “Stay with us; the day is almost over and it is getting dark.” So he went in to stay with them. He sat down to eat with them, took the bread, and said the blessing; then he broke the bread and gave it to them. Then their eyes were opened and they recognized him, but he disappeared from their sight. They said to each other, “Wasn't it like a fire burning in us when he talked to us on the road and explained the Scriptures to us?”
In many respects during these difficult days we are journeying through, some of us are just like these two travelling companions. Perhaps feeling a bit lost and confused, as our hopes and plans for this time of year have been shattered.
Some have had the disappointment of cancelled holidays, cancelled weddings and baptisms, birthday celebrations.
Some are worried about the future too, “will I still have a job to go back to?” “will my finances hold out?” “will I still be able to go off to college or university?” "will I get through this?"
Many have spoken to me about how Easter Sunday this year was so strange, so difficult, not being able to gather together worship with their Church family.
But in the mist of all of this, if we watch and listen, and pray, we are often blessed in small ways, by the actions of others........strangers in our midst.
I had this example from one of our members in response to my request for you to share your Holy Week and Easter experiences.
“Don't know if this is what you are looking for, but I had tears in my eyes watching the scene. I don't know the man, or who the woman was, but it was lovely to see the younger people making this happen for them.
Andy was upstairs and called me to come and see. From our bedroom window we could see across to a neighbour's driveway. What happened next was very humbling. A car with 2 younger people in it, came into the driveway. They helped a frail old lady get out of the car. Her purpose was to see and talk with the older confined gentleman who lives in the house. They could only do this by her being outside and talking through a window at the side of the house. They didn't stay long but I'm sure their day was made extra special because of their few moments spend together in Easter week.”
Prayer for today,
Jesus of the Emmaus Road,
Come, as we walk this Easter season, and be our companion.
Come, when life mystifies and perplexes.
Come, into our disappointments and unease.
Come to our homes, share our space, and open our eyes to recognise you.