Jesus is risen! This is the fifth post in a series examining the teachings and visitations of the resurrected Christ. This week our daily prayer will read along with Padraig O’Tuama to consider seven of these interactions. O’Tuama is a poet, theologian, and peacemaker whose book, In the Shelter, will help guide us.
Today’s Bible reading and an excerpt
Read Luke 24:13-33
When he was at the table with them, he took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them. Then their eyes were opened, and they recognized him; and he vanished from their sight. They said to each other, “Were not our hearts burning within us while he was talking to us on the road, while he was opening the scriptures to us?”
More thoughts for meditation
We have a way of seeing the world, a frame through which we process the impossible scale and complexity that surrounds us. These frames are often stories, narratives that weight some experiences and discount others. This is a benefit for Jesus followers in that it allows us to attach eternal worth to the ordinary. Padraig O’Tuama quotes Anais Nin, “we do not see things as they are, we see them as we are” to illustrate that we struggle to escape our particularity. Pilgrimage is one way to address this condition.
Often, pilgrimage is understood as a journey and defined by the destination. Another way to think about it is to consider the change it brings about in the pilgrim. It is a way to reframe our perspective. In today’s Bible reading, Jesus joins two of his followers on their journey and shares a meal. He transforms these ordinary rhythms of life and explodes his disciples’ perspective, “were not our hearts burning within us.” To walk with others may mean a hike, but I suspect it has more to do with living in community and sharing one another’s burdens. Breaking bread likewise includes eating together and feeding those in need. These are common tools, meals and community, that we may pick up and use in daily practice. This past summer I went to a wedding in Banff, Alberta. Both the Canadian Rockies and the bold marriage promises were completely out of scale with my ordinary grind. I was confronted with a story larger than myself and in that way I viewed the trip as pilgrimage.
Suggestion for action
Consider setting the dinner table this evening with an expectation of divine encounter. What would it feel like to sit down to a simple meal with an eternal perspective? If you are able to share this meal, how will you relate to each other with this in mind?
Giorraíonn beirt bothar — two shorten the road