The Things We Learn on a Journey
(Posted April 20, 2023)
“We don't receive wisdom; we must discover it for ourselves after a journey that no one can take for us or spare us.”
-- Marcel Proust
Many of us have had the experience – we go through a challenging time in our lives, wondering what purpose it served, only to find out later that we DID learn from it. This Sunday’s gospel story will confirm for us that -- yes – sometimes God shields us from knowing until we learn the lesson ourselves.
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On the Road to Emmaus
In this week’s Gospel, it is later on Easter Sunday when two men who are “almost” disciples of Jesus, are walking on the road to Emmaus. It’s about seven miles outside of Jerusalem. They, like most people living in the area, knew all too well that the Roman Empire had put Jesus to death on Friday. But the two hadn’t heard for sure that he had risen from the dead that morning. So of course, it is with these two men that Jesus chooses to appear and journey with them.
But Jesus has hidden his identity so that they thought he was just another traveler on the road who joined them.
When he continues with them in their walk, he asks them what they’re talking about. They tell him how discouraging it is to hear that Jesus is dead, and although friends of theirs had heard that people said Jesus was not found in his tomb that day, they despair. They had such hope that Jesus was the one, but now it just felt like the end of the road. Their new travel companion explained to them all of the prophetic Bible passages that said all of these things must pass. Still, they were unaware.
Jesus Lifts the Veil
As the darkness set in near Emmaus, Jesus was about to continue on, but the two men asked Jesus to stay with them for supper. It wasn’t until Jesus broke the dinner bread that their “vision” was restored, and they recognize who their partner for the journey really has been all along.
That’s the point for all of us. As we travel the journey of our lives through smooth roads and rough, steep spots, we may wonder if anyone cares. But our truth is, when we invite Jesus to join us, we’ll never walk alone.
I invite you to join us Sunday when Nancy Wildman sings to remind us, with Jesus, it’s never the end of the road.