Hidden Heroes of Easter – Cleopas and Friend on the Road to Emmaus
Part Five of our Hidden Heroes of Easter Series
Then their eyes were opened and they recognized him, and he disappeared from their sight. (Luke 24:31 NIV)
I’m not an observant person. Really. Ask my husband who waited five days to see if I’d notice he’d shaved off his beard. He finally gave up and told me. Ask my friend who took me for a ride in her brand new car hoping I’d comment on it. I had no idea. And then there was the time an old boyfriend tied 100 yellow ribbons on the oak tree in his front yard to welcome me home from a trip. Yep. I didn’t see ’em. He had to physically hold one and point to it before I saw that the whole tree was covered with yellow ribbons.
My family’s favorite story, though, took place on Christmas Day when I was ten years old. My parents bought me a bicycle and parked it shiny and bright in front of the Christmas tree. When I was finally allowed into the room to see my surprise … even knowing a surprise would be waiting for me … I did not see the bicycle. I wasn’t expecting a bicycle, so I just didn’t see it. I know. Pitiful. But true.
I can safely say that I would have been just as blinded as Cleopas and his friend as they walked away from Jerusalem that first Easter Sunday so long ago. They were desolate. Disturbed. Bewildered. Crushed. They thought Jesus was “the one who was going to redeem Israel” (Luke 24:21b), and yet He had died. The stories they’d heard of Jesus’ empty grave, of angels, and reports that He had risen made no sense to them. So, when Jesus Himself showed up and walked beside them … they did not recognize Him.
It’s quite the amazing story. Jesus Himself shared from Scripture why He came and why he died. Their hearts burned as they began to “see.” All they had just lived through had been prophesied long ago. The puzzle pieces were coming together. Then, when He sat with them at dinner and broke that bread, “their eyes were opened and they recognized Him” (Luke 24:31a). They had received a lesson directly from the Author of Scripture—and they were stunned and filled with joy!
Why do I call these dear, initially clueless disciples “hidden heroes”? These average guys, just like you and me? Because …
- they talked freely about their love for Jesus with a stranger on the road. The stranger could have been an enemy of Christ. Their sorrow and their hearts so filled with love and sadness, it all just spilled out of them. I want to live like that. I want Jesus so present on my mind that I can’t help talking about Him.
- they listened. They didn’t do all the talking. They had hearts willing to engage and hear. I want to learn to talk less and listen more. Like they did.
- they invited the stranger to dinner in spite of their own weariness. They had walked a long way and had grown fond of this amazing man who knew the Scripture so intimately. They wanted to care for him and feed him. I want to live like that. Even when I’m tired, just returning from a journey, filled with sorrow or trauma … I want to have a heart still willing to meet the needs of others.
- when their eyes were opened, they had to share the joy. Despite the seven miles they had just walked, they turned right around and raced back seven miles to Jerusalem. Their Lord Jesus, the One they loved, was alive! They’d seen Him, talked to Him, eaten with Him, learned from Him. They had to share all He had taught them about prophecy and fulfillment and it could not wait. I want to have that kind of eagerness. When God teaches me something, when He meets with me in a special way, I want to share it with joy despite inconveniences. I want Him to always matter that much.
- they might not have understood at first. God’s plan made no sense to them as they dragged their feet and limped toward Emmaus, but they loved Jesus anyway. I want to be like that.
Open our eyes, Lord. Open our minds to Your truths in Your Word. Help us to share our love for You with passion and joy. You are truly the Redeemer. Help us to let the world know this startling, glorious truth. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
You are loved,
Sweet Selah Ministries
Vision To encourage a movement away from the belief that “busy is better”
and toward the truth that stillness and knowing God matter most—
and will be reflected in more effective work and service
To offer resources and retreats that help women pause (Selah)
and love God more deeply as they know Him more intimately (Sweet)
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