When I was Consecrated Bishop Suffragan in 2008 I received a painting as a gift. This painting was a reproduction of the “Road to Emmaus” by Conrad Heinrich Bloch, the19th century Danish artist and is one segment of the series Bloch painted on the life of Christ. It hangs above our fireplace in our home and I often pray the morning Office before it to remind me of the truth of the presence of Christ wherever I am. It also serves as a reminder of the great message of Easter and the Resurrection to eternal life promised to all who believe in him.
It also serves as a reminder to me of how easy it is for one to get so overwhelmed in the things of this world that we do not recognize the presence of Christ among us. The disciples on the road to Emmaus were so caught up in their own conversation, their own rehearsal of what they had witnessed earlier that day they were unable to experience the presence of the Risen Lord Jesus in their midst. They knew the story, they heard the witness of those who went to the tomb only to find it empty yet they did not believe in the resurrection.
As I have said in many sermons, we can know the story but until we acknowledge and believe in the Resurrection of Jesus Christ we will simply continue to wander up the roads of our life with no purpose. It was only when Jesus made himself known to the disciples in the breaking of bread that they “got it!” It completely transformed their lives changing from mere bystanders to active participants in the proclamation of the greatest news known to humanity. It was the experience of the Risen Lord Jesus that completely and unalterably changed their lives.
And so it is for each of us, we too can be transformed by the Risen Lord. Let us not get so caught up in our own lives that we cannot experience the Risen Lord. Let us see this Easter as an opportunity to experience new life, new hope. Let our “hearts burn within us” and experience love and presence of Jesus Christ, the Risen Lord!