I will never forget a long difficult season of waiting on God to move in a particular circumstance. We, my husband and I were stuck so it seemed, but then one day it’s like something broke wide open, the clouds parted and everything changed seemingly overnight. We had been in a period of waiting. Waiting for change to come. Praying and pressing in and at times this felt like our prayers fell flat. But we continued to be persistent. Like the persistent widow in Luke 18, we continued to go back to Jesus and entrust him with everything and one day it all shifted.
The word ‘breakthrough” is a compound word. This means it has more than one word within it - a juxtaposition of two words forming one complex idea. Oxford dictionary defines the two words.
BREAK -to separate or cause to separate into pieces as a result of a blow, shock, or strain.
THROUGH - moving in one side and out of the other side of (an opening, channel, or location).
A story we may not consider under the theme of ‘breakthrough’ is the story of Jesus on the road to Emmaus. I’ve always loved this story. Roll with me here.
In Luke Chapter 24 - Following his resurrection, Jesus was walking along the road to Emmaus when he encountered two disciples who were also walking and talking about all of the events that happened in Jerusalem recently regarding his crucifixion. He approaches the men and begins to ask them about these things. He knows they are kept from recognizing him, as the scripture states, and they are surprised he knows nothing about all that occurred. I’m not sure why but it's curious to me that he just allows them to tell him everything as if he doesn’t know. Perhaps he just wanted them to pour out their hearts.
Through their conversation, they express some doubt as to who Jesus of Nazareth really was. They were troubled. They had hoped he would be the one to redeem Israel, but now maybe not so certain. They also had heard the two women had gone to the tomb and reported that Jesus was no longer in the tomb and that angels had told them that Jesus was alive. Yet they weren’t sure. They were questioning all of these things. Jesus follows up with reminding them about the promised Messiah and that all of these things had to come to pass as foretold by the prophets. He “opened up the scriptures to them”. He reminded them of the promise.
Later they ask Jesus to stay for dinner. He obliged. At dinner, when Jesus gave thanks and BROKE the bread and gave it to them, the Bible says “then their eyes were opened”.
Their eyes were opened. In that moment , in the breaking, they recognized who Jesus was.
Isn’t that the real definition of breakthrough for us as those who profess Christ? As believers? When we are between a rock and a hard place, encountering Jesus in our midst. Having the realization to the reality that He is with us all along. Seeing and tasting His promises and knowing they are true. He is who he says he is.
We can talk about stories of triumph, healed relationships, overcoming obstacles…but to me, this is the ultimate real breakthrough story. Jesus’ body, broken for us, and His glory revealed on the cross. He made a way through for us. He broke- through… for us!! He displayed His promise to us.
God is referred to often as “God of the breakthrough” Like, it’s in his very nature, it’s who HE is. I can expect breakthroughs as I journey with God. As I lean in and trust Him with my life and circumstances, I will see breakthrough eventually.
This story reminds me that our brokenness is a beautiful thing also. The trials of my life have moved me into a posture that has made a throughway in my relationship to Jesus. Of course, He must be invited in - just as the disciples invited Jesus for dinner. Invite Him into your brokenness today, and just wait - He will reveal himself. The song “Take Courage” says:
“Take courage my heart, stay steadfast my soul. He’s in the waiting. He’s in the waiting. Hold onto your hope as your triumph unfolds, He’s never failing. He’s NEVER failing”.
Love your friend,