lunes, 5 de mayo de 2014

"Journeying with and to Jesus!"

Photo credit: www.artbible.net3rd Sunday of Easter
May 4, 2014
Lk 24:13-35

“O how foolish you are, how slow of understanding! Is the message of the Prophets too difficult for you to understand?”

This phrase from the Gospel of St. Luke is directly addressed to the two followers of Jesus on the way to Emmaus. The talk between the two disciples harked on the tone of failed expectation that Jesus would be the Messiah, the one to redeem Israel. They abandoned the way of Jesus to return to their former lives in Emmaus as a consequence. Their fidelity invites comparison and contrast with the fidelity of the women who by their faith narrated to the disciples what they have witnessed in the morning at the tomb of Jesus. The question is, what positively contributes to their assent of faith. When Jesus interpreted the events of his life as the fulfillment of all God’s promise from one end of the scriptures to the other, it affirmed the very human endeavor of faith seeking understanding.

One of the deadliest dis-ease of contemporary life is impatience. We can understand that the two disciples of Jesus have become weary and impatient, and have abandoned the way of Jesus because of his apparent failure to meet their expectations. On the other hand, we can also look at is as a momentary reaction to look at the events from a distance to better understand them. In deciding to go away from Jerusalem, they were still preoccupied by the recent Jesus event. However, their anguish quickly vanished as they listened to the stranger. The encounter had drawn them to invite the stranger and to urge him to stay with them for the night.

At the disciples home in Emmaus, Jesus took the bread, said the blessing broke it and gave it to them. The language alludes to the Eucharist. But the theme of sharing a meal without jumping into the Eucharistic meaning provides us a wholly different yet corollary meaning. Through this theme, they have recognize that God’s kingdom has indeed come in Jesus’ sharing of food with them, who at his last meal said that he would
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not share food with his disciples until God’s kingdom come” (Lk 22:17). But now that he shared food with the two disciples. He thereby showed that God’s kingdom has come. It has come indeed! And so, his table companions now were no longer toll collectors and sinners, but his own disciples who have strayed from his way. The meal communicated how much they were loved and accepted, and how much they are forgiven to share in the meal of the Risen Lord. In a complete reversal of their disposition and decision, they were sent back on their way – his way.

In the journey of our life, at times we feel that we are alone and so far from the compassion and mercy of God. Our expectations crumble. We fall into our unfreedoms as we are trapped by the vicious cycle of sin. But we are never alone. We are only too encumbered to see the truth, to hear the word of God, and to feel that God is always with us. We unwittingly regard God who journeys with us as a stranger whom we do not know but who at the end becomes our veritable companion. The gospel for today teaches us that when we are weary, rest a bit; when we are in doubt, seek to understand; and when we lose hope, think of Jesus Christ who opened his arms wide to embrace the cross of suffering and death just to redeem us from our sins.

- Josh Fernandez, an incoming seminarian from the Diocese of Bataan.


Risen Lord, grant us the grace to recognize your presence in our midst as we continue to journey in life to you. Make our hearts burn for the love of your word so that we may proclaim the coming of your Kingdom here in the breaking and sharing of our life in you. Amen. 

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