And it came to pass, that, while they communed together and reasoned, Jesus himself drew near, and went with them.
The disciples at this time, before they know Jesus is alive, are all dealing with the intense grief of a significant loss. He wasn’t just their teacher and master, but a friend and a brother. They’d probably spent almost all of their time with Him during their years of following Him. And without His presence among them, they are severed from the closeness with God they had experienced. In the midst of that grief, nothing makes sense, and everything is hard to believe.
But Jesus is merciful to us when we get to those sorrowful places. He doesn’t want us to stay in that confusion and sadness, and so He draws near to these disciples. He walks with them, beside them, teaching as He went, enlightening them to the truth, helping them to figure out what is going on and what they would need to do. He removes their doubt and their fear and their sadness, and they eventually return to Jerusalem rejoicing because they had been with Jesus.
Isn’t this what Jesus does for us, as well? He draws near to go with us. In those places of sorrow and confusion and uncertainty, Jesus is near. He will listen to us as we tell Him what is bothering us, and He will teach us some things we need to know. He’ll go with us for the entire journey until we arrive safely to our destination. And He will leave us with the understanding that all we really need is Jesus. He will restore our joy and give us the reassurance and encouragement we need to keep going forward.
Let us not lose sight of the fact that Jesus cares about us in the most difficult moments we face in our lives. And He draws near to be with us and help us to get through them. So may we lean on Him when our hearts are overwhelmed. May we seek our answers from the source of truth Himself. May we depend on Him for help in every situation. Let’s not try to go it alone and remain confused and afraid, but experience the joy that can come at the end of the journey.