Emmaus, a small village in the Holy Land associated with the Easter story, tells of joy after deep suffering. Yes, Emmaus tells that joy – not suffering – is the end of the story,
for the disciples were privileged to find Jesus again as the living Lord.
Emmaus speaks of the fulfillment of Jesus’ words. ‘You will be sad, but your sadness will turn into joy’. On that same day two of Jesus’ followers were going to a village named Emmaus… As they talked and discussed, Jesus himself drew near and walked along with them; they saw him, but somehow did not recognize him.
Wasn’t it like a fire burning in us when He talked to us on the road and explained the Scriptures to us? Luke 24:32
On the road from Jerusalem to Emmaus Jesus met the dejected disciples, who thought He lay buried in the grave.
They were permitted to complete their journey at His side and in the end to recognize Him. Emmaus proclaims that
Jesus draws close to those who have buried their hopes and can no longer understand God in their darkest hour.Emmaus declares: The One with the answer to all your questions is here. He is right beside you and wants to shed light upon your darkness, because He is love and takes your pain to heart. He can’t bear to see you in such inner turmoil… Jesus, who once approached His troubled, burdened disciples, draws near to us today. For us, too, He has an ‘Emmaus’, a time of encounter, a time for answers…
In an Emmaus encounter Jesus says, as it were, to those who belong to Him: ‘Don’t be so foolish, imagining that all is lost when you meet with suffering and nothing seems to make sense and you cannot understand God’s ways. If only you would believe that out of every dying process comes a new beginning and new life; if only you would believe that suffering gives rise to joy, tears to laughter.’ Jesus Himself is testimony to the truth that from death comes life, from suffering and dying comes overwhelming victory.