“But which of you, having a servant plowing or feeding cattle, will say to him…when he is come from the field, Go and sit down to meat? And will not rather say to him, Make ready wherewith I may sup, and gird thyself, and serve me, till I have eaten and drunken; and afterward thou shalt eat and drink?” (Luke 17:7-8).
We have no trouble at all identifying with the servant in his duty to the master. No trouble in putting on our apron and serving up the Lord a full table of praises—a good feast of worship. We love to feed our Lord! It is our greatest joy, our supreme fulfillment—to minister unto the Lord.
But we have difficulty with the last part—the Lord’s part. “And afterward, you shall eat!” That is too much for us to comprehend. We do not know how to sit down after we have served him—to allow him the same joy we experienced in serving him! We rob our Lord of the joy of ministering to us.
We think our Lord gets enough pleasure from what we do for him, but there is so much more. He responds to our faith and rejoices when we repent. He talks to the Father about us and delights in our childlike trust. But I am convinced that his greatest need is to have one-to-one communication with those he left here on earth. No angel in heaven can meet that need. Jesus wants to talk with those on the battlefield.
Where did I get such a notion that Christ is lonely and has a desperate need to speak? It’s all there in the account of Christ appearing to the two disciples on the road to Emmaus. Jesus had just been resurrected and that very same day two disciples were walking from Jerusalem to Emmaus. They were grieved about their departed Lord but when he drew near, they did not recognize him. He wanted to talk; he had so much to say to them.
“And it came to pass, that while they communed together and reasoned, Jesus himself drew near and went with them…and beginning with Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself” (Luke 24:15, 27).
There could have been no finer experience for those disciples and they went away saying, “…Did not our hearts burn within us, while he talked with us?” We think of the joy of the disciples but what about the joy of Jesus? I see a resurrected Lord, tears streaming down his glorified cheeks, his heart filled with joy. He was fulfilled, his need had been met, and I see him overjoyed. He had ministered and in his glorified form, he had experienced his first two-way communion. He had poured out his heart but his lonely heart had been touched and his need had been met.