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 in deed 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 Messiah, who was mighty in deed and word in the sight of God and the people.
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 downcasted, 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 give 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.