Monday, March 21, 2016

Leaving Jerusalem (Part 1) - Lent 2016

Living Bread ~ Jesus said to them, “I am the Bread of Life; he who comes to Me will not hunger, and he who believes in Me will never thirst.” John 6:35

During this season of reflections and renewal, join me in exploring the Bread of Life. When we encounter Jesus Christ, this Living Bread feeds, satisfies, and transforms us. Come on this journey and remember this Bread “is broken for you”. ~ Donna Oswalt

While they were talking and discussing, Jesus Himself approached and began traveling with them. Luke 24:15 NASB

Within a few hours after Jesus dies and is placed in a borrowed tomb, the Sabbath begins. Many of Jesus followers find their Sabbath thoughts full of disillusionment and disappointment, even fearful of being identified with Jesus. The hours drag by, the disciples wondering and weary. Even though the next morning brings exciting news, visions of angels, and messages that Jesus is alive, doubt prevails. Some slowly begin leaving Jerusalem, but two encounter Jesus on the road to Emmaus.

Jesus begins to walk with the two as they are deep into a sad, troubling conversation. Not expecting or recognizing Jesus, they tell their travel companion all that has happened to this man from Nazareth, calling him a great teacher, a prophet and miracle worker, someone respected by God and the people. Their hope, now crushed, had been that this Jesus would be the Messiah to rescue Israel. Jesus listens to their lack of understanding, their misplaced, unfulfilled hope. So often, like these two leaving Jerusalem, we walk the wrong way, doubt the messages, miss the presence of God. Nurturing our disappointments, we fail to see the bigger picture.

Bread of Heaven – Surrounded by multiple translations of the Bible’s holy, sacred writings and historical records and theological commentaries to help me understand, still, I turn and focus on my problems, my concerns, my needs. My demons may not be unbelief, but they interfere with my faith. When my hope in Jesus is replaced by doubt, when my faith in God is exchanged for power of the world, when my love for others becomes self-serving, then, I, too, am leaving Jerusalem without Jesus. Thank you, Jesus, for coming after me, for walking beside me, for answering my soul’s deepest prayer, Lord, always give us this bread. – dho

Focus Point: Jesus listens to their lack of understanding, their misplaced, unfulfilled hope.

All rights reserved; copyright 2016 by Donna Oswalt/Co-Founder of Mangrove Ministries/Christian blogger and author; Breathing Room For My Soul (blog)~ Follow on Twitter @soulchat

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