March 25, 2001

“...And He went in to stay with them. And it came about that when He had reclined at the table with them, He took the bread and blessed it, and breaking it, He began giving it to them. And their eyes were opened and they recognized Him; and He vanished from their sight. And they said to one another, “Were not our hearts burning within us while He was speaking to us...” Luke 24:13-32


Shortly after Jesus was murdered, two of His disciples were walking down the road to the village of Emmaus. They were talking about Him, no doubt comparing notes on all that had happened leading up to His crucifixion. So intent were they on their conversation about Jesus that they did not recognize Him as He approached and began walking with them. Maybe they were talking about some of the prophecies that Jesus seemed to fulfill. Or maybe they were talking about some of the healings that He had performed. Maybe they were recounting Peter's story of walking on the water. They could even have been talking of the need for prayer, remembering how Jesus would sneak away to be alone with His Father. What we do know is that they were so intent on their conversation about Jesus that they did not recognize Him as He walked with them.

So many today find themselves in that same predicament: walking parallel to Jesus and yet not recognizing Him. Knowing much about what He did and said, but not knowing Him with their hearts. Parallel Christianity.

If the story ended there it would be a sad story. However, as we read on in the Gospel of Luke we find that an awesome thing happens. As the disciples have communion with Jesus they recognize Him! That very thing is still the same today. As we reach out with our hearts to Jesus and commune with Him, He opens the eyes of our hearts and we see! What is it that we see? We see Jesus! He is alive. He is for us, not against us. He loves us. We can sense His Presence, His love reaching toward us. This happens as we reach to Him.

Parallel Christianity is a religious experience that enables one to know all about Jesus.

True Christianity knits our hearts to the Christ who has returned to dwell, not in a manger, but in the hearts of men and women.

Come Lord Jesus!

agape,
---john

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