Known in the Broken Bread

“I am the bread of life.” John 6:48

“While [the two] were talking and discussing together, Jesus drew near and went with them… He said, ‘What is this conversation… as you walk?’ And they stood still, looking sad. Then Cleopas answered him, ‘Are you the only visitor to Jerusalem who does not know the things that have happened there in these days?’ And he said, ‘What things?’.. ‘Concerning Jesus of Nazareth, a man who was a prophet mighty in deed and word.., and how our chief priests and rulers delivered him up to be condemned to death, and crucified him. But we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel. It is now the third day since these things happened. Some women… were at the tomb early in the morning, and when they did not find his body, they came back saying that they had seen… angels, who said that he was alive.’ He said, ‘O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into his glory?’ And… he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself.

“So they drew near to the village…. [and] urged him, saying, ‘Stay with us…’ 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… They rose that same hour and… found the eleven and those who were with them, saying, ‘The Lord has risen indeed!’ Then they told what had happened on the road, and how he was known to them in the breaking of the bread.

“As they were talking, Jesus himself stood among them, and said, ‘Peace!.. Why are you troubled, and why do doubts arise in your hearts? See my hands and my feet, that it is I myself.’Luke 24:15,17-23,25-28,30-31,33-36,38-39

We can read His words, be taught from Scriptures, even sense His companionship, but there is nothing like knowing Jesus in the breaking of the bread. When Cleopas and companion finally recognized their risen Savior, it was because they understood the breaking… in feeding the thousands, in the last supper at Passover, in the body on the cross. The “prophet mighty in deed and word” was indeed the Lord who’d been pierced for them, and rose again to offer the Bread of life.

As we walk along the way and day, discussing current events and tragedies and conspiracies, as we wonder at people’s motives and lack of faith, do we miss the breaking? Do we fail to remind ourselves of the cross, and what Jesus being broken has won for us, and made significant by adding eternal value to every action and effort? Do we miss the surrounding brokenness, the crack in a stalwart facade, a lonely heart crying for help, a niggling temptation about to catch fire? Do we pause long enough to see the hurt we inflict, or the fracture we have allowed in our attitude toward God?

What will we do to know Jesus better when we encounter the breaking of relationships, and truth foundations, and hope? Will we call to mind His body broken for us, and look forward to His ultimate healing?

Lord broken and risen, in every brokenness I witness, give me eyes to see You and a heart to know You and make You known.

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