They said to each other, “Did not our hearts burn within us while he talked to us on the road, while he opened to us the Scriptures?”
Life can often feel empty. We sense we should feel more, experience more meaning, desire the right things more fiercely, and have full hearts when hearts ought to be full. But life’s not like that. Our desires and thoughts mix and match. We feel sad when we ought to feel happy and numb when we ought to feel sad. Holidays like Christmas often highlight this confusion. Yet it’s worth noting that our desires can be like a compass. They are not true north, but they do point to something. They point to a longing to be fulfilled. As if we were made for full hearts, and we just can’t figure out how to get there. How settling is it, then, to read that when King Jesus is near that hearts are set on fire? How fitting, it seems, that when he walks with the disciples on the road to Emmaus their hearts burn within them. Our longings are not so far off. The advent of the King means that we won’t always live with mixed up desires, but that one day our hearts will burn with the hope they were made for.