January 25, 2018
"He asked them, ‘What are you discussing so intently as you walk along?' They stopped short, sadness written across their faces." Luke 24:17 (NLT)
My husband and I walk both morning and night. We walk in the morning because I work from home. If I walk, it means I change out of my PJs and actually start my day.
At night, there's a different purpose.
My husband is a therapist to children. He sits with them every day. He listens.
There are times he has to step in as an advocate for a child. While he loves what he does, some days are really hard. Our nightly walks allow him to transition from heaviness to hope, especially on those more difficult days. I can almost tell you to the mile marker when the burdens of his day have lightened. His voice changes. He's lighter.
We all need a friend to walk with, don't we?
In today's Scripture text, two friends are walking. They are heavy-hearted indeed. They don't know what to think or what to do. Jesus died on a cross, and with Him, their dreams died, too. They loved Jesus as a friend, but they also believed He was the Messiah. They never expected Him to die an untimely death.
Earlier, some believers found the tomb empty. The women said Jesus was alive, but that seemed impossible. As they walked and talked, they tried to reason and figure it out. They simply didn't know what to think.
Suddenly a third person joined them in their walk.
“He asked them, ‘What are you discussing so intently as you walk along?' They stopped short, sadness written across their faces" (Luke 24:17).
They spill it all out to the "stranger," amazed how He's unaware of recent events. As they approach Emmaus, they ask the man to join them for dinner. While eating, their eyes are opened and they recognize the Lord. It's Jesus. He's alive!
Who knew that they were walking with Jesus all along?
As we celebrate a new year, we can't help but acknowledge this past year was challenging for many. When the world is chaotic, our temptation might be to withdraw from people. From conversations. Even from our faith. We might hold up all our broken dreams ... and wonder if it's worth it. Those feelings are real, and they matter to our Savior. Rather than walk away from Him, we're asked to walk even closer.
We walk with Him mile by mile, but also moment by moment. When we're sad, we can be honest. As we walk together, He listens. He reveals what we cannot see in the natural. He encourages us to hold on during those tougher places. He communes with us as a Friend and Savior.
Walking with Jesus isn't a task to be performed, but a relationship to nurture.
Just like these men who walked toward Emmaus, Jesus chooses to walk with us, and we can ask Him to stay a little longer.
Walk with me, Jesus. Throughout my day. In that relationship. Into my ministry or job. Walk with me as I share the burden that seems so heavy it almost knocks me down. Walk with me as I share the joy of knowing You.
Our burden becomes shared, rather than managed alone. We are equipped to begin again the next morning - where He meets us all over again.
Richard and I have been married a long time, and walking is part of who we are. One day, we won't celebrate the number of miles we clocked, but what took place as we did.
It's the same as we walk with Jesus. We won't always feel like it, but we show up because He meets us there. Our faith is strengthened as we find the rhythm of walking with Him, no matter what's going on in the world around us.
Dear Jesus, when life gets messy, I want to pull away or hide. I might believe no one else feels as sad or confused as I do, and so I keep it to myself. I'm so grateful You walk with me. I'm grateful I can be honest with You, and that You exchange my heaviness for healing and hope. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
John 6:37, "All those the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away." (NIV)
Do you need something to deepen your daily walk with Jesus? Suzie's new devotional, Come With Me Devotional: A Yearlong Adventure in Following Jesus, will help you get started.
If you’re looking for Valentine’s Day presents, Proverbs 31 Ministries has a collection of biblically-based gifts in our bookstore! Shop for yourself or for a loved one in time for February 14. Click here to view the collection.
Join Suzie on her blog for a giveaway of her Come With Me Devotional, and a beautiful bracelet.
REFLECT AND RESPOND:
Keep these words in mind all this week as you walk with Jesus: Show up. Be yourself. Receive.
Show up: Regardless of how you feel. He meets you there.
Be yourself: Don't hold back. He already knows.
Receive: Let Him carry that burden with you. Receive the help and joy He longs to give.
© 2018 by Suzie Eller. All rights reserved.