I love to study the Bible. I could be a professional Bible Study Attender except for the fact that if all we do is study the Bible, we’re not technically doing what the Bible is telling us to do, right?
I’m wrapping up an intensive study of Matthew through Bible Study Fellowship (which is amazingly in-depth and filled with historical and cultural explanations for much of the Bible) and we just finished talking about the resurrection of Jesus.
As I was reading the passage in Luke about the two travelers walking down the road to Emmaus, I wondered . . . How on earth did those two men not know it was Jesus walking right alongside them?
I mean, it says “Jesus himself came up and walked along with them; but they were kept from recognizing Him.” How dense could they be?
When Jesus asked what they were discussing, they reacted in shock – you would have to be from another land to not know about the crucifixion, burial, and resurrection of their Savior just three days prior.
Even after Jesus started to teach and explain scripture, the men STILL did not recognize they were traveling with their beloved Savior.
They were so focused on their own troubles and worries that they couldn’t even see what was right in front of them.
And I am humbled. Because then I realized . . . I’m dense, too.
I so often fail to see Jesus when He’s walking right beside me.
Like in the midst of dinner when it’s the “witching hour” and everyone is cranky and needs mama,
or among the mess that’s been commanded to be picked-up twice now,
or hiding between piles of laundry folded in increments because of steady interruptions.
He’s even found among the 10.5 million pairs of mismatched socks in my house (I’m guessing He would choose the matching bunny socks. Who wouldn’t?)
So often, I look for joy in the places where joy runs dry. I chase shiny things and get distracted by squirrels and devote time to things that may not matter in the overall scope of eternity.
I chase a joy that is temporary, a joy that is constantly hungry for it’s next meal. A joy with an insatiable hollow leg.
And chasing something insatiable is exhausting. It doesn’t matter how fast or how far or how long you run – you will never catch-up.
The things is, those shiny things, those squirrels distracting my attention . . . I can tangibly see them.
Yet Jesus can be seen everywhere too – but only if you know where and how to look.
He is in the unseen. In the preparations for dinner and the mess in the living room floor. Among the piles of laundry and the mismatched socks.
He’s with you in the tangled relationships and the boss who doesn’t value you. He’s there at night when you wonder if you can do it all over again the next day.
That, my friends, is not shiny. It’s real and true.
And it’s joy unspeakable.
Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. - 2 Corinthians 4:16-18