Our world is filled with fear, anxiety, and despair. After his death, Jesus’ followers were also filled with fear, anxiety, and despair until Sunday… when their despair turned to JOY!
Jesus had told his followers that they would experience grief when Jesus was taken from them. He told them that they would mourn and grieve, but that they would see him again and their grief would turn into joy. In fact, they would receive a joy that could never be taken away!
Jesus’ followers did, in fact, experience this grief. Even though Jesus had told them about it in advance, they simply could not comprehend it. Upon his arrest, Jesus’ disciples deserted him and fled. Peter and John followed to the house of the high priest. During the trial, when confronted about being a follower of Jesus, Peter denied it three times. When Jesus looked at Peter, he remembered the Lord’s prophecy, and went out and wept bitterly. After his burial, the disciples were in hiding for fear of the Jewish leaders. They were afraid and uncertain about what would happen.
The news of Jesus’ resurrection reached his followers, just as Jesus prophesied, it changed their despair into joy – a joy that could not be taken away! This message tracks two of Jesus’ followers from Jerusalem to Emmaus (and back) – and from despair to joy!