In Brian McLaren’s book “We Make the Way By Walking” he recalls and re-imagines the disciples walking on the Road to Emmaus. They are discussing the recent events in Jerusalem when Jesus was crucified and buried and the women’s news that the tomb was empty and Christ was risen. They are joined by a mysterious man who they tell the story to and who interprets it in the light of the ancient Hebrew Scriptures. They reach their home in Emmaus. It’s late and they invite the stranger in.
They sit at the table for a simple meal. The stranger reaches out and takes the bread, gives thanks for it, breaks it and gives a piece to each of them. In an instant it hits them all at once, this isn’t just any stranger this is JESUS, risen from the grave! They look down at the bread and back up again and Jesus is gone!
They all start talking at once. Was this just a vision? Was it real? They ask each other, “You saw him too, right?” “Maybe a vision means seeing into what’s more real than anything else.” They decide to rush back to Jerusalem that very night to tell the other disciples.
On their previous journey from Jerusalem to Emmaus they had been perplexed and sad over recent events. Now they were perplexed but tingling with life an hope. They almost felt resurrect themselves!
When they got back to Jerusalem McLaren imagines the encounter this way, “We talk as fast as we walk. We recall Jesus’ words from Thursday night [Last Supper] about his body and blood. We remember what happened on Friday when his body and his blood were separated from one another on the cross. That’s what crucifixion is, we realize: the slow, excruciating, public separation of body and blood. So we wonder, could it be that in the holy meal, when we remember Jesus, we are making space for his body and blood to be reunited and reconstituted in us? Could our remembering him actually re-member and resurrect him in our hearts, our bodies, our lives? Could his body and blood be reunited in us, so that we become his new embodiment? Is that why we saw him and then didn’t see him — because the place he most wants to be seen is in our bodies, among us, in us? “
Now this is truly something to ponder the next time we have communion!
Grace and Peace, Pastor Scott