Author’s Note: For the next two Tuesdays we will continue our look at our relationship with Jesus. As a reference we will study how two men responded to Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection. We will walk with them as they return from Jerusalem to their home in a small town seven miles away. On the Road to Emmaus Jesus encounters them and changes their lives. Somewhere along the road you will see yourself. You can evaluate where you are in your own walk with Jesus. You can decide whether you like where you are and whether you want to change how you respond to Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection.
I attended the second Promise Keeper weekend conference in Indianapolis, Indiana. More than 70,000 men gathered in the old RCA Dome stadium for 48 hours of Christian music, motivational Bible study from some of the top Christian speakers in the country, and fantastic men’s fellowship. The highlight of the weekend for me was when organizers hooked up with the Promise Keeper’s crowd in the Kansas City stadium and both groups, more than 100,000 voices, sang Holy Holy Holy in unison. I cried. It was one of the most spiritually moving moments in my life. My heart burned with joy, gratitude, awe and wonder.
It was, by all accounts, a mountain-top experience for me. A “Wow” moment in my spiritual walk.
Don’t you think that might be the same kind of mountain-top experience those two disciples had on the road to Emmaus when Jesus walked along side them?
Just imagine! The King of Kings, the Savior of the World, El Shaddai, Emmanuel, the Lamb of God, the Root of David, the Messiah meets two disciples on the road. On the way, “Beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, He explained to them all that was said concerning Him in the Scriptures.” Luke 24:27.¹
Think about it. Here were two disciples discouraged, brokenhearted, confused, on their way home when a stranger to them revealed all there was to know about Jesus. These two were the only ones on the planet Jesus shared about Himself so comprehensively. Jesus gave everyone else glimpses of Him and who He was. But these two got the whole enchilada, the big picture. From Moses through the Prophets.
Then He went home with them, had supper with them, broke bread with them and revealed Himself to them. Then they recognized Him and He left their prresence. They discovered who He was. What was their response?
“Were not our hearts burning within us while He talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?” Luke 24:32.
Has your heart ever burned like that? Have you ever been to a mountain top? Have you ever been inspired by a pastor’s message? By a beautiful hymn? By a touching, tear-filled testimony? By a story of precious grace? Have you ever felt the Holy Spirit transform a circumstance that made you melt in wonder? Have you ever felt the presence of God so strongly that He brought you to tears? Those mountain top experiences are beyond description. They’re singular experiences that create life long memories.
Maybe this is where you’d like to be. Maybe this is what you call being a true follower of Jesus Christ living in the Spirit. These are precious experiences of God’s grace and Holy Spirit working in your life. And yet, there’s still something missing.
What is it? Jesus Christ himself has been working in you and the power of His resurrected life touched you. But you still can not say, “I have met Him. He has made himself known to me.”
There is a huge difference between a mountain top experience and an intimate personal relationship with Jesus Christ and knowing Him as your friend. No matter how beautiful the mountain, you gotta come down. Mountain top experiences fade after time. They are just a glimpse of the blessed revelation of Jesus Himself as your Savior, taking charge of you, walking with you, blessing you and keeping you every day.
¹Jesus Himself, by Andrew Murray, published by Project Gutenberg Ebooks, was an inspiration for this blog post.