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Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Birmingham Reg. Charity No. 234216.
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Writings of the Parish Priest (1) Writings of the Parish priest (2)
Writings of the Parish priest (3)
Read, reflect and live inspired (4)
Writings of the Parish priest (5)
Fr. Jimmy Lutwama AJ
That very day, the first day of the week, two of Jesus’ disciples were going to a village seven miles from Jerusalem called Emmaus, and they were conversing about all the things that had occurred. And it happened that while they were conversing and debating, Jesus himself drew near and walked with them, but their eyes were prevented from recognizing him. Luke 24:13-16
This appearance of Jesus to two of His disciples is intriguing and fascinating. They were quite distraught and didn’t seem to know what to think about Jesus’ death. They had hoped He was the Messiah but then He was killed. And then there were some who claimed His tomb was empty. What should they make of all this?
As the story goes on, Jesus “interpreted to them what referred to him in all the Scriptures.” With that, these disciples realized that this man with whom they were speaking had incredible wisdom and understanding, so they invited Him to stay with them. Jesus stayed and sat down with them in their home. While there, Scripture says that “he took bread, said the blessing, broke it, and gave it to them. With that their eyes were opened and they recognized him, but he vanished from their sight.”
Again, this is intriguing and fascinating. Why did Jesus appear to them, conceal who He was, sit down and break bread with them, allow them to suddenly recognize Him and then vanish into thin air? Well, He did it for a reason and we should be very attentive to this.
Jesus wanted those disciples, as well as all of us, to know that He who rose from the dead was very much alive and that we would recognize Him in the breaking of the bread. We would recognize Him in the Most Holy Eucharist!
Jesus is here, right now, in our presence, but we most likely do not see Him. But He is truly here! These disciples were in the presence of Jesus and they did not realize it. The same is true for us. We are constantly in His presence and we do not realize it. This is especially true when we are at Mass but it is also true in countless other ways throughout our day. We must commit ourselves to seeing Him, to recognizing Him and to adoring Him. We must discover the resurrected presence of Jesus all around us.
Too often we think that our Lord is present only in extraordinary ways. But that is not true! He is constantly present to us in very ordinary ways. He is here with us right now, loving us, speaking to us, and calling us to love Him. Do you see Him? Do you recognize His presence?
Reflect, today, upon the experience of these disciples. If you were them, you’d be blessed to be in the presence of the Savior of the world. What an honor! The truth is that God is with you now and always. He is constantly with you and is constantly speaking with you. Look for Him and listen to His voice. You may be surprised at how near He really is.
Lord, thank You for loving me so much that You are always with me. Help me to see You and to recognize Your gentle and still voice. Give me the eyes of faith to see You present in the Most Holy Eucharist, and help me to discern Your presence in every ordinary event of my day. I love You, dear Lord. Jesus, I trust in You.
DIVINE MERCY REFLECTIONS
The “world” is referred to in Scripture many times, especially by Jesus Himself. He said that the world will hate you and will not understand you. The world will, in fact, persecute you. This could become the cause of fear and distress for some. It causes these effects within us when we are overly concerned about looking good in the eyes of the world and acting so as to win its esteem. Do not fall into this trap. The world will love you only if you become worldly, taking on its secular and sinful values. Instead, keep your eyes fixed on Heaven. Live as though you are in the world, but not of it. Allow the Lord to shield you from worldly enticements so that you will live only in Him and for Him at all times.
Seriously ask yourself, today, how much influence the opinions of the world have on you. Do you find yourself dreaming of being well regarded and respected in the public eye? If so, be very careful with this desire. Sure, if you have given yourself completely to Christ and, as a result, many people speak well of you, this is good. But it’s not all that common. More often, when we commit ourselves to Christ and to His holy mission, we will find that we are misjudged, scorned and even persecuted. It may be only in small ways, but don’t be surprised if it becomes more pronounced as you draw closer to the Will of God. Do not worry about this. Keep your eyes on Christ and be concerned only about His judgment of you. His “opinion” is all that matters because His opinion is Truth.
Lord Jesus, You were not controlled by the opinions of others. You did not allow the false values and pressures of the world to direct You. Help me to keep my eyes on You and Your Will in all things. Give me courage to be concerned only with pleasing You. Jesus, I trust in You.