Thursday within the Octave of Easter
Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures. (Luke 24:45)
Acts 3:11-26; Psalm 8:2, 5-9;Luke 24:35-48
Imagine the emotional roller coaster that Jesus’ followers had been on in the preceding two weeks: exhilaration and anticipation after his triumphal entrance into Jerusalem; confusion at the predictions of his passion and betrayal; fear in the garden of Gethsemane; devastation and disappointment at the foot of the cross; skepticism at the women’s story of an empty tomb; fragile hope as their friends said they had seen Jesus. Their tension was heightened; their nerves were on edge. But then Jesus himself stood in their midst and said, “Peace be with you” (Luke 24:36)!
Their reaction was hardly peaceful. Startled and terrified, they shrunk back with amazement. Jesus even showed them his hands and feet, and ate in front of them to prove he was alive. Somehow it still wasn’t enough. They still weren’t ready to go out as witnesses until Jesus “opened their minds” and helped them understand the Scriptures about him (Luke 24:45).
This is something Jesus wants to do for you as well. Maybe you’re not on an emotional roller coaster—or maybe you are, but everyone has to deal with highs and lows. Financial or physical problems may have dashed our expectations, leaving us to wonder what God is doing in us. But rather than scratch our heads in confusion, we can take a cue from today’s Gospel reading. We can ask the Lord to take our understanding, limited as it is, and touch us with his word. We can meet him in Scripture and ask him to allay our fears, dispel our confusion, and convince us of his love.
Take some time, and ponder the Mass readings for today. Ask the Spirit to give you some insight into them—something that applies to your life. If a verse or section jumps out at you, write it down and contemplate it. What is he saying to you? Is he building up your knowledge of his truths? Is he offering words of comfort? Is he guiding you in an important decision you have to make? Whatever the Lord is doing, know that he is also equipping you to be his witness—just as he did for his disciples!
“Jesus, touch my heart, and shape my mind with your word! Teach me, Lord, so that I can stand firm in your truth, no matter what happens.”~WAU