I think the importance in all of this is because we have only a limited amount of scripture. Those of us who love the Lord always hope to know a little more. If having an idea of what He may have looked like helps one to pray than there is certainly no harm in that.
Of course people should be careful not to base one's faith on things like the shroud but how can we resist the idea of being a little closer physically to him? Can you imagine how it must have been to walk beside him as the disciples did? Awesome.
Fair enough. What you write makes a lot of sense, especially on a deeply emotional level.
I just become agitated when the debate about teh Shrouds authentiticy someone becomes linked with the debate about Jesus authenticity.
If evidence using modern scientific techiniques shows that the Shroud is not what some would like it to be- sobeit To cling to belief in the Shroud despite clear and indisputable evidence to the contrary (although this is not yet 100% the case) allows those who wish to sully the name of Christ an unfortunate opening.
I think that's the reason that we don't have physical things to link us to the Lord (I mean from the standpoint of items he used, touched, etc.)
There is always the danger of unintentionally worshipping the items.
(hmm, re-reading what I wrote, let me please say by way of clarification that I in no way mean to assume or intimate that you would fit into that category...)
To answer your question - no. I can't imagine it. I've tried to mentally project myself back in time (so to speak) to envision what that world must have been like and how it must have been for the disciples to relate to the Lord Jesus Christ personally. Consider John for example. Jesus truly loved him like a brother!
I've often asked myself if I had lived in that time period would I recognize the Messiah promised of old? Or would I be skeptical, a doubter - like Thomas?
But I delight in the fact that one day I'll meet Him face to face, not only as my Judge (not to condemnation) but also as my King and Savior.
Wow, that was a wordy post but I'm feeling a little verbose right now, I guess! :o)
But the reality is so much better! I would rather have the Holy Spirit living within me and through me, than have Jesus stand next to me. The disciples seemed to be such bumblers until Acts 2.
John 14:12 ¶Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father. 13 And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it. 15 ¶If ye love me, keep my commandments. 16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; 17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. 18 ¶I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.
If having an idea of what He may have looked like helps one to pray than there is certainly no harm in that.