As they walk along the road their hearts are set afire and burn within them… their hope and faith in this Jesus Christ is rekindled. Jesus reveals himself to them in the breaking of the bread…they dared not even speak the question of who this stranger might be…for they knew! And even though he vanished from their midst…he remained with them in their trembling hands that held the bread that had been broken and blessed…he remained in their burning hearts. In his absence they felt his real presence and they were forever changed.
Regardless of how many times we may turn away and walk down a different road…Jesus comes after us…he seeks us out and set our hearts afire once again. Each time we gather to bless, to break and to share the bread, “-even though we gather at home in separate places-” we are still bound together in Christ and Christ is present with each of us and nonetheless Christ still invites us to open ourselves to that presence and share of his very self, wherever we are. And in this sharing we are more and more transformed into the Risen Body of Christ…not for ourselves but for the sake of the life of the world!
We are sent, just like the original disciples, to carry forth “The Presence” into a broken world so desperately in need of healing, especially in the midst of this pandemic…we are called to be the stranger who walks with those whose hearts are breaking, whose hopes are dashed…we are called to be bread broken and shared for the sake of the world. In this moment we are called to reach out to all those living in fear and trembling, isolated and lonely, to be the presence of the Risen Christ to them. Like the breaking of the bread moment for the disciples, what moments have I had when I felt the presence of the Risen Christ in my life? How did it affect me? How can I be “the Presence” to others in my life? Who has been the least likely “Presence” to me…what did I learn from the encounter?