Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Meet Me on This Road

In the beginning, YHWH made heaven and earth

The Man and the Woman lived with promise,
clothed in their trust of his heart

And then they Fell


In the beginning, YHWH created Israel

Israel lived by his promise,
as he had brought Jacob to freedom through the Red Sea

And then they turned

and YHWH called
and they turned

and YHWH called
and they turned

and YHWH smote
and after that, our exile

YHWH promised a new beginning

he promised them a new heart, beating with covenant faithfulness

And soon their return


In the hours before the dawn of chastened Israel's vindication

the promise comes to bear

the Son of Man confronts the rod of YHWH's arrogant instrument


the righteous and anointed one is slain


They had promised their lives to him. They trusted YHWH's promise to redeem them. "How long will you hide your face from us, O YHWH?" they must have asked. "We are a disobedient people, and our god has finally forsaken us.

Their hope has died.

They walked along the road, arguing. Perhaps they argued about it, this shattered hope. Was he a false prophet? Had they disappointed YHWH? Had he finally proved as faithless as they had?

Or perhaps they argued about where to stop for the night.

They didn't know what the others did. They had not seen. They had not touched and felt. They offered their story and their broken hearts to a stranger on the road. They offered him bread and drink.

"He was our hope," they explained.

The stranger told them God's story anew. He told them of Moses and the Prophets, and of the Suffering Servant: the Son of Man who must suffer for Israel and be vindicated by God before his enthronement as his viceroy.

The Risen Lord told them the story anew, and their suffering was transformed. In the breaking of bread he bore the sorrows of their long and dark Holy Saturday into the joy and illumination of Eastertide.

Many of us have missed the promise of Easter, and suffer under the long shadow of our crucified hopes. We share our stories of pain with one another and with the stranger. We tell of the God who failed to show up. We offer him this bread.

We learn silence here that we might hear the new tale, the bigger story that weaves every tattered thread of our lives into the tapestry of YHWH's redemptive work.

We eat the bread, offering our brokenness for his healing.

We recognize him in this word and this sacrament, and he disappears from our sight.

And our cold hearts begin to burn

Encounter on the Road to Emmaus


Kyle said...

I did write it, J-dog. And thank you for that, I really appreciate it.

Stephen Lawson said...

very nice.
I think poetical exposition of Holy Writ is highly undervauled in most branches of Christianity.

one of my favorite gospel accounts, perhaps the favorite. I am so encouraged by luke's short statement, from their sight. not simply, "he disappeared." because he did not, he was still very present in that room. He is still very present, very near, when we enter into that sacrament.

Stephen Lawson said...

also, I really like the art, where do you get all your icons/artwork from?