The Road to Emmaus - the Road to Jerusalem
Today's Gospel is a story of two journeys. The first - perhaps the more prominent one - is the journey of the two disciples away from the City of Jerusalem to the small town of Emmaus. It is a journey travelled in the full light of day - but one clouded by confusion and a lack of understanding. It is only as darkness falls on the day, that a light shines into the minds of the two.
The second journey is travelled in the opposite direction, from Emmaus to Jerusalem. It is travelled in the darkness of night - yet it is purposeful, immediate and direct, driven by the light of revelation, of knowledge, of rejoicing in the truth.
This may lead us to reflect upon our lives. Everyone knows our lives are a journey, and that we will meet many turns in the road, many changes in the landscape, many obstacles in the way.
But for most people the journey of life is a journey walked in the brightnesss of day. All is clear, all is living, everything can be understood. Anything can be achieved. Almost anything is possible to those who dwell in the brightness of day. Humanity has surpreme confidence in its own power, its own vision. And yet, the journey of life is one which advances towards an approaching sunset. Whichever way we turn that is what is ahead of us - a darkness which will conclude everything. As the years advance they believe life becomes dimmer, less vibrant, less clear, until darkness covers all.
On the contrary, the Christian life is not a life walked in the light of day, but through the darkness of night. It is the journey not to Emmaus, but to Jerusalem. Yes with perils, yes with doubts and uncertainties, yes with anxieties. Yet it is a journey guided by the light of Christ and what we approach is not a final darkness, but an eternal dawn, a sunrise to new life, a light which conquers all darkness for ever.