In Luke 24 we’re transported to a dusty road headed to Emmaus where two of the disciples were in the middle of discussing the heartbreaking current events they were living through. I imagine them feeling any number of things—bewilderment, lament, fear, hopelessness, anger, confusion—when Jesus himself walked up among them and joined the conversation.
Jesus listened, received their sadness, heard their pain, and drew near to them while they were anxious and confused. He mostly asked questions and let them recount their experiences of losing their Messiah back to him. He took liberty to point them to the hope laid out by the prophets, but he mostly just listened and stayed with them.
Later they admitted their hearts had been burning as Jesus had walked with them and opened the scriptures to them, but it wasn’t until he broke bread that night at dinner when they saw him for who he was. This physical act of breaking bread together helped them see and remember how just days before Jesus had spoken of his own body and blood, breaking bread at what we now call “The Last Supper.” This was more than a template for communion. This was intimacy. Friendship. Promise. Hope.
My friend Jessica Herberger releases her book Break Bread Together today, and as strange as it is to release a book in the midst of a pandemic and a world heaving under the pain of this cultural moment, I believe this message could not be more relevant.
How does “breaking bread” in community help us to see Jesus more clearly? What might Jesus want to teach us through the last gathering he had with friends? What of listening, holding space, and pointing us to the hope of his promises?
“We can’t keep going wider in our community in an attempt to compensate for lack of depth. As a generation we run the risk of missing our on the abundance found in deep-rooted friendships,” Jessica says.
What if 2020 is the year our need for Christ-centered community and deep friendship is exposed, not just so we can see what we’ve been missing out on, but so we can see what’s available if we come to the table?
What if we break bread together and find Jesus has been there all along?
Get your copy of Break Bread Together here (affiliate link).