“Their eyes were opened.” (Luke 24:31)

Suppose you are an archaeologist who discovers a great city hidden in the jungle for centuries. Or a police detective who finds the crucial clue that will unlock a stubbornly difficult case. Or a scientist who stumbles onto something so amaz­ing that it promises to revolutionize your field. There are few words to describe these moments—except perhaps astounding, extraordinary, and incredible!

The two disciples in today’s Gospel reading had just such a moment on the road to Emmaus. They already knew Jesus. They knew God had anointed him as a great prophet, teacher, and healer. They knew there was something very special about him. But they didn’t see the complete picture right away, even when he was walking right beside them and explaining how all of Scripture spoke about him and his mission. They didn’t get it until he broke bread with them.

In that stupendous, exhilarat­ing instant, their eyes were opened. They saw that Jesus was much more than a great prophet. They saw what he had done for them by dying on a cross. They saw that he had given everything for them—to the point of even becoming bread for them. It was something that they understood in their hearts and in the depths of their souls: Only God could have done something like this. And because they had eaten the bread he had just blessed, they too were now in communion with God.

In your prayer today, thank the Lord for this awesome, unfathom­able mystery—the mystery of Jesus’ great love and humility. It’s true that as you approach communion, you don’t see Jesus in all his glory. All you see is a small, white host. But because he was broken on the cross, he can now be broken as bread. And, given as bread for the world, he can now bring all of us into his embrace.

What can we give to Jesus in return for such a marvelous gift? What can we give but our worship, our service, and our obedience? He has opened our eyes and filled our hearts!

“Father, thank you for the great gift of the Eucharist. Come transform me today. Make me anew in your image, so that I may be holy as you are holy!”

Acts 3:1-10; Psalm 105:1-4,6-9