By Brooke Holt
“So they drew near to the village to which they were going. He acted as if he were going farther, but they urged him strongly, saying, ‘Stay with us, for it is toward evening and the day is now far spent.’ So he went in to stay with them. When he was at table with them, he took the bread and blessed and broke it and gave it to them. And their eyes were opened, and they recognized him. And he vanished from their sight. They said to each other, ‘Did not our hearts burn within us while he talked to us on the road, while he opened to us the Scriptures?’” Luke 24:28-32
Think of a time when your heart burned. My husband tells the story of when we met on a mission trip. He says his heart burned throughout the weekend as he knew he had met the woman he was going to marry. Does your heart ever burn and what does it burn for? These heart burning experiences are ones of clarity, longing, and hope.
As the disciples walked along the road to Emmaus with Jesus (though unrecognized by them), they described how their hearts were burning within them. What caused this burning in their hearts? The presence of Jesus. Glory walked among them. As Jesus revealed the Scriptures, their hearts became more fully alive and attuned to the Lord. They felt a deep stirring, a longing, and a sense of being truly alive. They had one of those moments people live for – a time of purpose and passion.
Through this conversation with Jesus, the disciples began to understand the Scriptures, and it reignited their hope. As Jesus revealed himself to them in the breaking of bread, they could see him and receive the truth of his resurrection.
Every longing within these men was fulfilled in one person – Jesus Christ and him alone. Simply nothing in this world could then or can now satisfy the human soul outside of Jesus. As Pascal explained, “There is a God-shaped vacuum in the heart of each man which cannot be satisfied by any created thing, but only by God the Creator, made known through Jesus Christ” (Pensees).
Your heart will also burn for the Lord. Why? You were made by him and for him. The one who designed you is the only one who can truly fulfill you, lead you, and empower you throughout your life. Jesus walked with the disciples; that was good, but you have him even closer. Jesus lives within you through his Holy Spirit. Just as he revealed himself to the disciples, just as he enabled them to understand the Scriptures, he can reveal himself to you and lead you to understand his truth.
Is your heart burning within you? Do you have a longing that can’t be satisfied? Jesus is here. He is ready to reveal himself to you, to enlighten you to understand him and his words, and to lead you throughout this life and into the life to come. We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.
Let's face it, the Christian life is hard. Relationships take work. Christians forget. Sometimes it is tempting to go back to the days when God was not the center of our lives - to backslide. We are all faced with tremendous pressures to drift away from intimacy with Jesus and the community of the Church. However, the Lord invites us to pay attention, to move forward, to draw near, and to live lives of worship. Draw Near: Hebrews on Christian Worship is a small group Bible study on the Book of Hebrews intended to lead participants into a deeper intimacy with the living God in the context of New Testament worship. Draw nearer to God in authentic worship today!
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