“But we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel. Yes, and besides all this, it is now the third day since these things took place. Moreover, some women of our group astounded us. They were at the tomb early this morning, and when they did not find his body there, they came back and told us that they had indeed seen a vision of angels who said that he was alive. Some of those who were with us went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said; but they did not see him.’ Then he said to them, ‘Oh, how foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have declared! Was it not necessary that the Messiah should suffer these things and then enter into his glory?’ Then beginning with Moses and all the prophets, he interpreted to them the things about himself in all the scriptures. As they came near the village to which they were going, he walked ahead as if he were going on. But they urged him strongly, saying, ‘Stay with us, because it is almost evening and the day is now nearly over.’ So he went in to stay with them. When he was at the table with them, he took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them. Then their eyes were opened, and they recognized him; and he vanished from their sight. (Luke 24:21-31) We continue in this very strange season of Easter, practicing social distancing to help flatten the pandemic curve. A strange Easter season indeed! But on the other hand, could there ever really be a normal one? The two disciples on the road to Emmaus probably speak well for many of us: “we had hoped…” “We had hoped…” They had hoped that Jesus would fulfill all their expectations. They had hoped that he would be the Messiah to rout their enemies and keep them safe. Sound familiar? It does for me. I had hoped (or tend to hope) that life would (will) present a fairly safe and victorious environment. I certainly did not anticipate a pandemic or a potentially collapsing economy. “We had hoped…” “I had hoped…” How about you? Still, there is this. The eyes of the disciples are opened when Jesus takes bread and breaks it! Is it not amazing and still true: that we, like them, are most likely to recognize him in the breaking of his body rather than in perfect health or a surging economy? Where do you recognize our risen Lord these days? Do you know anyone who may be losing hope? Our Lord is risen and is with us. Is he calling you to remind someone? Have a great week!