I am intrigued by the Emmaus road story. It’s full of all kinds of potential. So I had the brilliant idea to google “walking down the road” for lyrics as a place to begin, plenty of choices, none particularly good starting place; so I tried “walking down the street” more opportunities, no better starting points. So I’m going back to stumble forward.
Last Sunday’s Gospel was another Gospel lesson from John, what’s that 4 of the last 5, in a year of Matthew? Oh well. When you peel away all the doubting stuff, you find a journey story, as the disciples move from unbelief to belief, and later Thomas moves from unbelief to belief. In effect it’s a road trip story. Sunday’s Gospel from Luke (are ever going to get to Matthew?) is also a road trip story, a journey down the road, also a journey from unbelief to belief.
In years past I’ve focused on Jesus being made known in the breaking of the bread, and the importance that has for Eucharist centered churches. A part of that story is the intimacy of the table and potential such intimacy imbues. This morning I am draw to a similar potential imbued by intimacy unique to long journeys.
On several occasions on a road trip of a few to several hours I‘ve experienced space and time in which all (well for safety sake most) of the world fades away and you are in singular relationship with a traveling partner. On one such occasion my wife and I got into a fierce discussion about different wall in different houses my parents lived in; on other occasions discussions lead to inspired realization, mostly about myself, born risk only possible in singular intimacy.
It’s the first day of the week, everything that has happened is either exuberant rumor, Jesus is risen, or raw truth, Jesus is crucified. To discuss either is full of risk. Nonetheless when a stranger joins these two disciples, they engage in risky conversation. As a result they come to inspired realizations. My sense is those realizations inspired them to take more risk and invite a stranger to join them at table where they come to know Jesus in the breaking of the bread.
I am sure you trust in the transforming power of sharing Eucharist. I am sure you invite others to join you. But I wonder if we are willing to engage strangers on the intimate journey that give rise to inspired realization?
Emmaus is a story of coming to know Jesus. It’s also a calling to walk with another sharing the Good News of our risen Lord and God.