Biblical scholars have always been fascinated by Luke’s account of the resurrection. What makes Luke’s telling of the story so interesting is the way he focused on two friends walking along the road to Emmaus.
Cleopas and his friend, neither of whom we have met before, are walking along when a stranger joins them. They begin to talk about Jesus and His death and the rumors of His resurrection. The stranger, Jesus, yet to be recognized by the other two, takes the time to explain why the Messiah had to die and what the resurrection means. Then, while He is breaking bread with them, He allows Cleopas and his friend to recognize Him.
Interesting, isn’t it? The story isn’t about Peter or John or any of the other disciples. Nor, is the story about the women. The story is about two guys walking down the road.
The story is about us. Remember, the good news of the gospel is not that we can get to God, but that God, in Christ, has come to us. The story of the road to Emmaus is the first proof of this. Jesus comes to Cleopas and his friend. They aren’t even looking for Him, but Jesus is looking for them.
Lost, but now I’m found. Blind, but now I see.
These past few weeks, I’ve spent a lot of time sitting with my Dad in the hospital. There are hours of silence interrupted by moments of sheer terror. You cry. You laugh. You believe. You doubt.
Most of the time you just put one foot in front of the other. The road is before you and you don’t know where it goes. You know you just have to keep walking. So you walk.
Somewhere in the moment, you won’t ever be able to figure out exactly when it was, but you will know. Someone has been walking with you. The Stranger who has joined you on your journey is familiar. He is Emmanuel, the promise of Christmas come true. God is with us.
Step for step.