Luke 24:13 “Now that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem.”
My Bible notes this morning took me to the story of the two disciples on the road to Emmaus. They were walking the seven miles late in the day and inevitably the duo were expressing their doubts, fears, grief and sadness, regurgitating their thoughts about the momentous events that had shattered the band of Jesus’s followers, as they tried to make sense of all that had happened. But then today’s text leapt out of the page to me – THEY WERE GOING THE WRONG WAY. It was later in Acts 1 that Jesus instructed His disciples not to leave Jerusalem, but in the days following His resurrection, the disciples didn’t know what to do. But Jesus sought out His two followers on the Emmaus road and lovingly turned their despair into joy, providing answers to all their questions, and their hearts “burned within them” with His exposition of the Scriptures. And they promptly headed back to Jerusalem. But the thought occurred to me that there have been times in my life when I have gone the wrong way, heading over the hill to an Emmaus away from the Lord’s presence. And through His grace and mercy, He has lovingly sought me out and restored me back to His presence. He is still in the restoration business today. What a wonderful Saviour!
The Lord’s Prayer. A few words dripping with the Teacher’s anointing. The staple diet for Christians everywhere. A simple outline or a standalone prayer, it is one that has helped me in my prayer life for many years. But these Words of our Lord emerged in a special way during our visit to Salisbury Cathedral recently. A wonderfully ornate building, full of chapels, supine stone saints, several modern pieces of art, plaques everywhere, remembering the good and the great. But then towards the end of our visit, one of the indigenous clergy mounted the steps leading to the pulpit and proceeded to invite all present to join him in prayer. To stand there listening as his words resonated throughout the building brought home the reality that such places, sadly so often dusty mausoleums, are still capable of proclaiming our faith. And then he finished by inviting all to join him in the Lord’s Prayer. This to me was a “God moment”. Something special. Something significant. Something reminding the enemy and people everywhere that Jesus’ teaching is still as relevant today as it was nearly 2000 years ago. And where better to make that proclamation than in God’s house.
Psalm 62:5 For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my hope is from him.
I was meandering down the A907 near where I live the other day, walking our pet Westie. The road is much used by local traffic, and trucks moving building materials and waste from the local pit bing; a road always busy, always noisy. A ready-mix cement lorry had just passed and disappeared, grinding its way into the distance. And then there was silence. No traffic noise at all. Just the off-beat cooing of a wood pigeon and further off, a male blackbird letting the girls know he’s there. Silence. And I was reminded of today’s Scripture. Sometimes I have to get somewhere quiet to hear God’s voice, which can be drowned out for most of the time by the raucous bombardment of music, conversations, TV news (usually bad!), and anything else the devil can throw at me to avoid my hearing a whisper from above, reassuring me that I am loved, blessed, precious, and safe in His arms. It’s pointless to ask if I need to hear God – I always need to hear Him! But join me in regularly finding somewhere quiet to really hear Him; to get the soul-food we need… Uh-oh, here comes another truck!