Between Midnight and Dawn: A Different Way

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 He asked them, “What are you discussing together as you walk along?”

And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.

28 As they approached the village to which they were going, Jesus continued on as if he were going farther. 29 But they urged him strongly, “Stay with us, for it is nearly evening; the day is almost over.” So he went in to stay with them.

30 When he was at the table with them, he took bread, gave thanks, broke it and began to give it to them. 31 Then their eyes were opened and they recognized him, and he disappeared from their sight. 32 They asked each other, “Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?”
Luke 24 — The Road to Emmaus

 

 

A hidden path that starts at a dead end,
Old ways, renewed by walking with a friend,
And crossing places taken hand in hand,

The passages where nothing need be said,
With bruised and scented sweetness underfoot
And unexpected birdsong overhead,

The sleeping life beneath a dark-mouthed burrow,
The rooted secrets rustling in a hedgerow,
The land’s long memory in ridge and furrow,

A track once beaten and now overgrown
With complex textures, every kind of green,
Land- and cloud-scape melting into one,

The rich meandering of streams at play,
A setting out to find oneself astray,
And coming home at dusk a different way.

~Malcolm Guite “Prayer/Walk”

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Like so many, I tend to walk through life blinded to what is really important, essential and necessary.  I can be self-absorbed,  immersed in my own troubles and concerns, staring at my own feet as I walk each step, rather than looking at the road ahead, enjoying the journey.

Emmaus helps me remember how He feeds me from His word, so I hunger for even more, my heart burning within me.   Jesus makes plain how He Himself addresses my most basic needs:

He is the bread of life so I am fed.
He is the living water so I no longer thirst.
He is the light so I am never left in darkness.
He shares my yoke so my burden is easier.
He clothes me with righteousness so I am never naked.
He cleanses me when I am at my most soiled and repugnant.
He is the open door–always welcoming, with a room prepared for me.

When I encounter Him along the road of my life,  I need to be ready to take a different way than I originally planned: to listen, to invite Him in to stay, to share whatever I have with Him. When He breaks bread and hands me my piece, I want to accept it with open eyes of gratitude, knowing the gift He hands me is nothing less than Himself.

He is here, so close, so accessible, so much a part of humanity — as we walk, as we eat, as we drink, as we express gratitude — I feel His Spirit, recognizing He offered Himself as the sacrifice made on my behalf.

No other God would. No other God has. No other God is here, dwelling within us.

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During this Lenten season, I will be drawing inspiration from the new devotional collection edited by Sarah Arthur —Between Midnight and Dawn

2 thoughts on “Between Midnight and Dawn: A Different Way

  1. Thank you Emily for your beautifully expressed thoughts here. You make the way more clear for me.

    Susan, pediatrician in CA

    Sent from my iPad

    Like

  2. Emily, you have created a skillfully integrated account of the heartaches – and the joys – of discipleship. Your description of the Gospel story of the disciples’ flight from Jerusalem post crucifixion, now leaderless and discouraged, could very well be the pattern for us as we face seemingly hopeless obstacles on our own journeys. The specific geography, place in time, and historical events may differ but we, too, face overwhelming moral and spiritual trials that weaken our resolve and tempt us to stop trying and to give up the struggle – by not wanting to face the reality of what is occurring in the godless frightening world into which we have been plunged. But then — we hear His voice and are fed by His Spirit and we regain our strength and our resolve to continue on because:
    He has led the way.
    He remains at our side.
    He awaits us at the end of our journey.

    Your faith-filled prayer of humility and acknowledgment (‘He is the bread of life…’) is pure gift. It is so striking in truth and in reality that I cannot disturb the beauty of it by further comment. I have made a copy, taped it to my bedroom mirror, and will recite and meditate upon it each morning as I greet my day.

    Thank you.

    Like

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