Make New Life Possible with Giving

Here’s a thoughtful reflection on Luke 24:13-34, the encounter with Jesus on the Emmaus Road.  It was written by Annemarie Klassen and submitted by Sheryl Johnson.

"Were not our hearts burning within us
while he was talking to us on the road,
while he was opening the scriptures to us?" Luke 24:32

Christ breaking bread at Emmaus, from Art in the Christian Tradition, a project of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library, Nashville, TN. http://diglib.library.vanderbilt.edu/act-imagelink.pl?RC=54253 [retrieved April 4, 2015].   This woodcarving panel is one of 18 from the main entry door to the basilica of Santa Sabina. The church is an early basilica (5th century), with a classical rectangular plan and columns. The decorations have been restored to their original modesty, mostly white. Together with the light pouring in from the windows, this makes the Santa Sabina an airy and roomy place. The wooden door of the basilica is generally agreed to be the original door from the 5th century, although it was apparently not constructed for this doorway. Eighteen of its wooden panels survive — all but one depicting scenes from the Bible, albeit with some departures from canonical versions of the scenes. Most famous among these is one of the earliest certain depictions of Christ's crucifixion, although other panels have also been the subjects of extensive analysis because of their unusual imagery. -- from Wikipedia

Christ breaking bread at Emmaus, from Art in the Christian Tradition, a project of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library, Nashville, TN.  [retrieved April 4, 2015].
This woodcarving panel is one of 18 from the main entry door to the basilica of Santa Sabina. 
The wooden door of the basilica is generally agreed to be the original door from the 5th century, although it was apparently not constructed for this doorway.  — from Wikipedia

They walked with heavy sadness,
those two disciples on a long, lonely journey.
A stranger joined them. It was Jesus.
But they could only see a stranger,
a friend to share the long walk ahead.

He spoke with them,
comforted their sadness and offered new thoughts.

When he gave thanks for the bread,
broke it and gave it to them,
they saw and they knew it was Jesus.

People are sometimes
afraid to see the hope and new life their faith shows them.
They think they must consider only what is real.

But what is real? Hunger is real,
so are the faces of children with no hope.
Greed is real and so is violence and war.
People of faith can see that.
Why can’t they see the presence of the Lord,
who speaks to their hearts about other things that are just as real?

Love is real.
The eyes of faith see new possibilities
where none were found before.
Even death does not hold back the spirit of God.

So let’s look again.
Let’s see the living Christ
sharing the journey, inspiring new hope.
Among the poor and homeless,
in the prisons and hospitals,
in the lands of famine and war,
new hopes are waiting to be seen.
The journey starts with ordinary steps
as we walk our daily paths,
looking around as Jesus did with the love of God in our view.

"Were not our hearts burning within us
while he was talking to us on the road,
while he was opening the scriptures to us?"

— From “A Litany for the Easter Season” written by Annemarie Klassen and posted on the website of the Presbyterian Church in Canada.

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