"When he was at the table with them, he took bread, gave thanks, broke it and began to give it to them. Then their eyes were opened and they recognized him'.." Luke 24:30-31 NIV
I find it interesting that, after the resurrection, Jesus slowly revealed himself to his friends and followers. There wasn't a giant party with loud music. Jesus didn't jumped out from behind a curtain and yell "Suprise! I'm alive!" Instead, Jesus quietly encountered his people as they were going about their daily lives. Jesus met them where they were. He walked, talked, and ate with them, before they had any clue who was with them.
I think Jesus took this measured approach because his friends and followers had been through the trauma of losing him. Then, came the rumors of his missing body. They were trying to figure out fact from fiction as they nursed their grief. In this scripture in Luke, Cleopas and another follower are walking to Emmaus, working through the events of Jesus death and missing body in their conversation. In compassion and love, Jesus met them on that physical and spiritual journey.
They talked and walked for miles until they reached the village. They still didn't recognize Jesus at this point. They didn't know who their new friend was, yet, something about him made them want to remain in his presence. They invited Jesus to stay. And he did. This is my favorite part. When they sit down to eat, when Jesus breaks bread and gives it to the, they realize who he is. The see Jesus when they stop and sit with him. They see Jesus in the act of giving thanks. They see Jesus when he gives them bread. Maybe Jesus didn't want them to recognize him too fast. Or, maybe, by taking a break from trying to figure out the chaos, they could open their hands and hearts to receive. Maybe, by stopping and stilling their minds, they were able to really see Jesus.
Jesus is here. He is alive. May we receive him.
Grace and Peace,