Tag Archives: Easter

ENCOUNTER THE LORD OF HOPE

ENCOUNTER THE LORD OF HOPE

Luke 24:13-35

It was after three days when the two disciples were traveling back to Emmaus, seven miles from Jerusalem. On their way, they were debating and discussing what had happened in Jerusalem for the last few days about Jesus who was mighty indeed and words but crucified and then buried.

They were so downcast and depressed because their hope was lost. A hope that someone would deliver them from the Roman oppression.

Their faith was with Jesus Christ, their would-be a Messiah, who was mighty in deed and word in the sight of God and the people.

EMMAUS EXPERIENCE

 Here was a story that all of us can relate to as we too experience what the two disciples experienced.

We may have undergone or going through an “Emmaus experience”.

Like the two servants, they had put all their hopes in Jesus believing that with Him, all their dreams for freedom shall be fulfilled at last by the Messiah they long waiting for.

We may have once put all our hopes in other people. With great optimism that this person will be our defender, our champion, our hero. but in the end, they left us wounded, abandoned, abused, and broken.

We may have put our energy to work out our relationships but it never works…

We might exert all our dedication and hard work aiming for that promotion and position, but our boss never appreciated what we’ve done.

We may have reached our rock bottom and hit us badly, let us downcast, frustrated, hopeless, and undermine.

 

Emmaus the road of Retreat

 Emmaus is the road to our defeat and surrender.

It is where we pity and tell ourselves that we are losers.

It is when we want to return to our old life.

Emmaus is when we walk back to where we came from. It is the road to isolation; we separate ourselves from the rest.

This is the road where we slowly waver in our faith.

 

Emmaus is a journey

 All of us are not exempted from this part of the journey.

All of us have walked on the same road.

Like the experience of Cleopas and the others, we have journeyed the same path.

Because on the same road, it is where God finds us. It is where He meets us.

We may not look for God while we are on the road to Emmaus, but it is God who finds us on this road to retreat.

Why? Because God is following us in our Emmaus journey not to condemn us but to encourage us.

Not to blame us but rather to uplift us. Not to let us fall astray but to guide us.

We may find it difficult to see the light on the road to Emmaus, but God will surely open our eyes to see rays of light and shade of hope.

 

Emmaus is a walk to remember

Emmaus’s experience is not only about retreat but an encounter with God.

It is when at this moment we have the opportunity to experience Him who seeks us.

It’s an occasion to remember because at the moment that we were down, neglected, and abandoned, there was a God who never forsakes us.

There is always a God who permanently walks with us.

We are not alone.  We are not forgotten.

 

Emmaus is not our destination

We should remember that Emmaus is not our permanent destination.

God doesn’t intend us to be stranded in our Emmaus.

You might be enjoying your stay in your Emmaus right now but God will find a way to win you back.

Our destiny does not depend on people nor governed by events and circumstances. Our Destiny is with God

That is why Jesus commands the two disciples to go back to Jerusalem.

We are encouraged to go back to Jerusalem.

Jerusalem is where God had called us.  It is where Jesus saves us.

Our Jerusalem is where Jesus is. It is where we belong with the people whom God called.

 

Recognizing God in our Emmaus journey

 By His Presence

Verse 32 says” not our hearts burning within us while He was speaking to us in the road while He was explaining the Scriptures”

We recognize God by His presence. It is a presence that comforts us.

In His company, we find that we are important, and He regards our value worthy as we perceived ourselves.

It is a presence that never condemns and rejects but rather welcomes and encourages.

 

By His Words

 In verse 27,” Then beginning with Moses and with all the prophets, He explained to them the things concerning Himself in all the scriptures.

We recognize God through His Words by revealing Himself to us.

He has the words that encourage us and gives us hope.

Jesus is the Word that gives us life.

 

By the breaking of the Bread

In verses 30-31, God opened their eyes after the breaking of the bread, and they recognized the presence of Jesus.

Whenever we are in our Emmaus, encounter God in the Holy Eucharist where we will experience His holy presence, speaks to us through the reading of the scriptures, and receive His real presence.

You might be walking back to your Emmaus but it is in the same Emmaus where God will meet you.

Listen to His Words speaking to you right now, feel the burning heat of His presence and meet Him in the Eucharist and allow God to open your eyes and hearts.

 

May you find God in your Emmaus,

Mikesendon

Catching Nothing May Just Be Another Learning

CATCHING NOTHING MAY JUST BE ANOTHER LEARNING
John 21:1-19

HE SAID, “THROW YOUR NET ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF THE BOAT AND YOU WILL FIND SOME”. WHEN THEY DID, THEY WERE UNABLE TO HAUL THE NET IN BECAUSE OF THE LARGE NUMBER OF FISH.- JOHN 21:6

It is not surprising that most of us easily backed out when we don’t figure out what is really happening.

And even if we have that understanding of what is going on, we are still puzzled and our limited minds cannot grasp the reality of the situation because at the back of our minds we have still a lot of questions.

Like the story of the two disciples on the road to Emmaus, Peter and the rest of the disciples have learned valuable lessons about Jesus’ resurrection.

That life does not end even when you see it falling. Even when you witness it that the door is closed.

When we are not given any more options, we need to listen to His Words that give direction because God knows the best solution.

Let us again dive deep into the story of the rest of the disciples and understand that “Caught Nothing does not mean the End of the Game”

PUZZLED AND TROUBLED

The disciples have not yet overcome and fully grasp what had happened with the Lord even when He already appeared to them the first time.

They spent almost three years being with the Lord and Jesus after His resurrection had nowhere to be found and no idea when He will appear again, what to do next, and what was the plan.

Their life for the past years revolves around Jesus’ ministry of healing the sick, casting out demons, hearing preaching, and witnessing miracles day by day.

But for now, the ministry is under watch, no more preaching, no more teachings, miracles cease, those who followed Jesus were hiding and some returned back to their normal life wondering what happened.

They may think that their faith in Jesus made a mess in their lives because they were identified with Jesus and now they were on the watch list.

Their movement became limited.

Still puzzled about what to do, they may be asking themselves “What shall we do now?”

Even in our lives, under painful events and tragic experiences; we have the same question “What shall we do now?

I have so many loans in the bank and I cannot make things better, what shall I do now.
I am the talk of the town and my friends left me, what shall I do now?
I am now fifty, and not yet ready to retire.

“WHAT SHALL WE DO NOW?”

With this in mind, we console ourselves and return back to our comfort zone.

To where we fit and are accepted. To where we are best. To a life of mediocrity.

This may be the same question of Peter and the other disciples.

Peter demonstrate this scenario like all of us, so he returned where he came from.

Fishing.

For some people, fishing is a hobby and to be one with nature. It’s good for deep thinkers.

But for Peter, he returned to what he loved and was familiar with, fishing!

Catching fish was his expertise. He knows the sea, and the timing and this made him successful.

“You don’t know what to do now? I’m going fishing.”

There was no doubt that even his fellow disciples when he asked them to go fishing, all followed him.

When our expectation fails us, isn’t that many of us settle for less?

Because we don’t want to be hurt and to fail anymore

WHAT VALUABLE LESSONS LEARNED FROM DISCIPLE’S EXPERIENCE

1. WE CAN NOT GO BACK WHEN GOD SHUTS THE DOOR

This is what we need to know, sometimes God closes more doors than he opens.

He shuts more access so that we could get to the right door that leads us where to go. To our destiny where He wanted us to be.

Like Peter and the disciples, we grab our old boats, we use the old nets, we hang with old friends, and we do the old things.

We return back where we fit, where we used to be.

But when we return back to where we fit, we cannot fit there anymore.

Caterpillar cannot go back to where he came.

Chicken cannot go back to its shells again.

Because when we left everything to serve God, there should be no turning back.

The skills we had acquired before should not be used to do what we usually did because God will be using that skills in a different form.

From fishing fish, they become fishers of men.

We should not be disappointed by many companies that close their door for us because there is one prepared for you with your acquired skills to be used to a better position.

“Kapag pinto ay kanyang sinarhan hindi dahil sa wala ka nang babalikan kundi para buksan ang pinto na mas mainam kesa sa iyong pinanggalingan”

2. ADMIT THAT NOTHING IS WORKING

The problem with most of us is that we rely on our ability to do, to accomplish something. We brag on our expertise.

Like Peter might say to them, “You don’t know what to do? Ok, come with me because I am good at this. I know this going to work”

But what you will do if the things you know really work don’t work?

God shuts doors in our face we can’t go back to where we came from.

Being a Christian, there is no turning back because the mold that we usually fit will not fit us anymore.

“I know this man, this is where I was good at.”

So they cast the net but take time, some more time, and more time.

But seems the fishes were sleeping or on holiday somewhere because none of them is touching the net.

Peter at this time might be feeling red already and in excuse might say “By this time there should be fish already”.

So they waited for some more time but there were no fish.

Peter at this time might be feeling red already and in excuse might say “By this time there should be fish already”.

How many of us expecting something and until now waiting for it to come?

“By this time, I should be with my family already in the Philippines but I’m not yet ready to retire”.

Then you pull the net up, “Surely by now I should have already a husband…”

Pulling it up once again, “Surely bow now I should have already children”

Surely by now, I should have already gone home for good.

But the Bible says they had CAUGHT NOTHING.

We need to admit that nothing is working.

Peter doesn’t know that on that night, God shut the door for him.

No matter how good and intelligent we are, how gorgeous and beautiful you are when He shuts the door, we can do anything.

God puts us in a position to realize that without Him we can’t do anything.

God will humble us.

We need to admit that nothing is working.

Our skills are of no use until we humble ourselves.

“Kung ginawa na natin ang lahat at hindi umuubra, huwag isipin na mahina ka. Minsan kailangang huminto at sa Diyos tumingala para humingi ng kanyang gabay at awa.”

3. CAST YOUR NET TO THE RIGHT SPOT

We must be aware of any abnormal failures.

We should always suspect unusual failures because it means that there is something spiritual going on.

Uncommon letdowns mean God is talking to you somewhere.

You can call for help from anybody but when He slams the door, no one can help you.

And when they admit that they can do anything, Jesus said to them “cast your net on the right side.”

Take note that it’s the same boat, the same net, it’s on the same lake, only a change of sides.

The blessing comes not because of the new net or a more sturdy boat or a new lake but the difference lies in the obedience to a Word of Direction.

It is not enough that you have your skills, that you have the right equipment that you have the right support unless you hit the right spot, we will not make it.

Because when God speaks in our life, He gives us Words of direction.

“Ang biyaya ay hindi sa pagandahan ng bangka o pagalingan ng pangingisda; ang pagpapala ay matatamasa kung inihahagis ang lambat na may pagtitiwala”

May we discern & learn from everything that is happening,

Mikesendon

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THE STONE HAS BEEN ROLLED

THE STONE HAS BEEN ROLLED

The stone has been rolled, now we know that we are not fooled.

Because the fullness of our faith is when Christ is resurrected from the dead.

When Christ rises again, we know that our faith is not in vain.
He is alive and in Him, we are alive as well.

It gives us hope that no one can constrain us from our situation.

The stone has been rolled for us to give us the assurance that there is life after death.

Giving us the courage to triumph over every adversary.

The stone has been rolled for us to be free. Free from our sin and freedom from anyone who makes us slaves.

No more chain can bound us, no more stone can hold us because indeed we are free.

Have a blessed Easter Sunday

Mikesendon