If you have ever experienced heartburn, one of the first things you probably did was grab an antacid to help ease the uncomfortable symptoms. Perhaps the indigestion was so severe or chronic that the assistance of a physician was necessary to provide relief. Whatever the case, that type of heartburn is not what I want to discuss today. I want to discuss the burning in our hearts that we encounter on our Jesus journey.
I’m talking about the words we hear today in the Gospel of Luke (24:13-35). It is after the resurrection and two disciples of Jesus are traveling the road to Emmaus. Jesus catches up with them and begins speaking to the two travelers…they seem to be caught up in their own emotions of the events of the previous days and are unable to recognize Jesus with them. When they drew close to their destination the two invited the stranger to stay with them.
Then in Luke 24:30-32,35 we read, “And it happened that, while he was with them at table, he took bread, said the blessing, broke it, and gave it to them. With that their eyes were opened and they recognized him, but he vanished from their sight. Then they said to each other, “Were not our hearts burning within us while he spoke to us on the way and opened the Scriptures to us?” Then the two recounted what had taken place on the way and how he was made known to them in the breaking of the bread.”
How do we, today, pay attention to the strangers among us? Do we talk to those on our path or do we hurriedly make our way to our destination? Do we take time to share our hearts that are burning for Christ? Jesus is the Divine Physician and He does not prescribe an antacid to extinguish the fire in our hearts…rather I see Him as diagnosing us as contagious…by living as Jesus taught and sharing the Gospel message we in turn are setting the hearts of others ablaze with the love of God. By hearing the word of God and acting on it, how do we in turn become bread to feed a broken world?