Walk It Out: 9 Observations on the Road to Emmaus

Walk It Out: 9 Observations on the Road to Emmaus

Luke 24:13-35 is a manly story. I think most of us can identify with the attitudes and actions of the two disciples in the account. As I write this, I’m sitting in my oldest son’s home at Ft. Benning, GA. We were able to see him yesterday after almost 10 weeks of very intense training. He was a little shell-shocked by what he’d been through. It is a great blessing to process the experience with him. He endured much and learned much. Things are raw right now. He’s physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually drained. He’ll have better insights and perspective once he’s had a bit of time to process.

After traumatic or high-emotion experiences we need time to settle and evaluate.

We need to step back and see how all the pieces and parts fit together. For those of us who follow Jesus and trust the Sovereign Lord of the Universe, we need to step back and ponder. We believe that He is ‘working all things together for good’ but how does this experience fit? That’s just where these two disciples were following the events of Holy Week, Good Friday and Resurrection Day.

So, they took a walk.

As you have opportunity, read the passage and see if you can identify with these disciples.

Here are a few observations that encourage me.

1) They needed to do something, so they took a walk.

The experience was fresh… That very day. We’re talking about the evening of Resurrection Day. These guys didn’t know what to do next, but they needed to do something, so they took a walk. Not a bad idea when you need to think through some things.

2) They traveled together.

Two of them were going to a village named Emmaus. It’s not clear why they were going to Emmaus but they were on a walk. Probably at about 3 miles/hour this would have been a 2+ hour journey. Isolation is dangerous, so walk with a buddy. Men need to spend quality time shoulder to shoulder with other men processing life.

3) They welcomed a stranger to their journey.

They encountered a stranger who was (seemingly) unaware. We should welcome others to our journey. There is much we could learn or teach along the way. Turns out, both happened here.

4) They shared their story with transparency.

When they realized the stranger was unfamiliar with the events, Cleopas told him what was going. But, what’s even more important, he shared their reaction. He modeled transparency; “we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel.” Much is learned by men as they share not only what’s happening in their lives but how they are reacting to it. A man who’s child is battling cancer needs not only to share the details with his brothers but also the emotions evoked by the crisis. It’s not that men don’t experience emotions, they just don’t often have opportunity or encouragement to give voice to them.

5) Mentors are valuable.

Turns out, the guy they were speaking with, was Jesus. The Savior was with them. That’s often the case. He may not present himself to us directly as He did in this story, but he is often represented in the experience, wisdom and words of folks who join us on the journey and help us sort out the pieces. The Lord uses mentors, friends, family and yes, sometimes even strangers, to help us sort things out. We really do benefit from the perspective of others.

6) There are answers in the Word.

This is my favorite part. The stranger (Jesus) pointed these confused men to the Word. “And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself.” Two quick points here…

  • Great mentors point us to the Word of God. There are answers there that we often haven’t considered. At least I know that’s the situation in my life. I’ve learned much and gained much perspective from folks who have shown me how God has given me both answers and instructions in His Word.
  • This is a side note, but the ENTIRE Bible is about God’s plan to redeem fallen humanity (including me) through the life, death and resurrection of Jesus! The WHOLE Bible tells the WHOLE story of His love for us! We’d do well to pay more attention to this.

7) Men value meals!

Much happens among men when they sit shoulder to shoulder to enjoy a meal together. I don’t need to say much about this.

8) Jesus reveals himself.

You know, He’s among us but we often don’t have ‘eyes to see or ears to hear’. When Jesus broke the bread to give thanks, their eyes were opened. Jesus chose to reveal himself to these men. He reveals himself to us as well. Pray that God will open your eyes to see His work and witness around you.

9) It was too good to keep to themselves!

These men had new perspective. They left for Emmaus confused. When clarity came, they were compelled to share. So much so that they left the meal and made the 7-mile journey back to Jerusalem to tell the others. Remember these men walked 7 miles processing their confusion. Then they went seven more miles once the Truth was revealed. How far are you willing to go to tell someone how Jesus has revealed Himself to you?

I love this passage of scripture. It’s full of Truth treasure. Read it and meditate on it over the weekend.

Is there anything that has happened or is happening in your life that you need to process on a long walk with another guy?

Be on the lookout for how Jesus shows up!

Mike Young
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