As I sit and think about my own experience with the desire to “get out of dodge” as it were; I am slightly surprised at the sting stemming from the reasons I once wanted to leave the church. Without getting into any details, I will say that as with anyone who is part of a group of people I have experienced disappointment with the church in the past. I’m sure that you have as well.
Many times disappointment leaves us wanting to run, and abandon the things that have caused us grief. We want to start fresh, new people, new town, new job, new church or no church….whatever it might be in each of our own situations. There are times in life when we all want to walk away.
I wanted to run, and I eventually would have had things not changed.
As it turns out though, when I felt like I was alone on a road leaving everything I had known Jesus himself drew near through two of his servants.
One a friend who has always supported me without judgement, who I am friends with to this very day. She has a way of always pointing me to the reality of the risen Christ, despite whatever circumstances. The best thing about the way God uses her in my life is that I am not even sure she is aware of the impact she has.
The other is a friend who knew I was struggling at the time, and intentionally prayed for me a lot…and was always willing to listen patiently and help me along.
Jesus presence shows up right when we need it and if we have eyes to see, we recognize him and can be strengthened by him to continue on in faith.
Maybe for this week as we think about the Emmaus road, we need to not only think about how God becomes present to us….but also how we can join people on the road and help them to see the presence of God as we journey along with them….what do you think?