Devotion for January 7, 2021 from Pastor Barbara Caine of Holy Redeemer:
Jan 7, 2020 Caine Devotion
Now on that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem, and talking with each other about all these things that had happened. While they were talking and discussing, Jesus himself came near and went with them, but their eyes were kept from recognizing him. And he said to them, “What are you discussing with each other while you walk along?” They stood still, looking sad. Luke 24: 13-17
It was the day after…. The day after the unthinkable had happened. These two people were walking along, discussing the events of the day before….
Everyone I’ve spoken to has been shocked, saddened – and more – by the events in Washington D.C. yesterday. I believe we can all understand how Cleopas and his companion may have been feeling as they walked down the road, talking and discussing the crucifixion of their teacher Jesus, just the day before. They’d run out of words by the time Jesus joined them and asked what was gong on. They were so distracted and distressed that they did not even recognize him. They just stood there, looking sad.
If you are like me, you feel much more than just sadness that folks stormed our capital building and threatened our elected leaders. Many were injured, one person was shot and killed, 3 others died…. What do we do with these feelings of anger, fear, frustration, indignation, especially while Covid-19 infections and death are reaching new records with alarming regularity. How and where do we go from here as people of God? Does anyone else feel helpless?
Well, these two folks were unable to change what had happened, had no influence over their political leaders, and had to accept the unacceptable. They were pretty much helpless….and yet, they were so important to Jesus that he made a point of walking with them down the road they were traveling. He listened to their pain, shared time and a meal with them. I find myself wishing we could have a meal with Jesus – wait! – we can and do! We have a meal with Jesus every time we have communion! And another thing – he helped them to see that their hearts burned within them, that Jesus had already been working within them to help them see with new eyes!
And what did those helpless, frustrated, angry, indignant followers of Jesus do? They literally changed the world. Not with violence. Not with money. Not with ambition. They literally changed with world with love. With compassion. With determination to enact justice. With seeing through the eyes of Jesus and just two commandments. Love God. Love one another.
In these days when injustice hits us in the face, for example, the way Black Lives Matter protestors have been treated compared to how yesterday’s assailants were treated, we know we are seeing through the eyes of faith, that our hearts are burning with the flames of love, and that Jesus is with us, continuing to work in his church – us! – to change the world. Hang in there, my beloved! We get to take part in the change!
In Christ, Pastor Barbara