Scripture

John 20:24-29

Now Thomas (also known as Didymus) one of the twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came.  So, the other disciples told him, “We have seen the lord!”

But he said to them, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put m finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, ‘I will not believe.”

A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!”  Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.”

Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God”

Then Jesus told Him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed, blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”

Reflection

Thomas was one of the disciples that was not at the tomb after the resurrection.  We assume he was hiding. Thomas had a hard time believing.  He had been disappointed before.  Jesus comes to him personally, offers peace and a closer look, “Put your finger in the holes in my hands, and your hand in the spear print in my side”.  Jesus comes not judging, not demanding, not accusing, not rejecting.  “Just reach out, Thomas,” Jesus said.

“My Lord and my God!” is Thomas’s response as he falls to his knees.

I love the idea here that Jesus seems to have a soft spot for doubters, and deniers too.  Peter had a similar experience when Jesus came to him on the sea of Galilee after Peter denied him 3 times.  Jesus is drawn to the places where grace is most needed, at our points of doubt, fear, failure, pain, hurt. It is to these places Jesus enters (even though the doors are sometimes locked).

I have long believed that God meets us most clearly at the point of our own limitations.

My own story of faith is not that different from Thomas’.  I grew up in the church and had been exposed to every aspect of church, faith, Bible, Jesus.  But I did not believe it and had rejected the possibility of Jesus being any more than a historical figure.  On a master at arms night watch in the Navy at the age of 20, I encountered Jesus at about 2:00 in the morning.  I remember saying to the Lord, “I am sorry I have not believed in you, I believe in you now, come into my life”.  The rest is literally history for me.  Years of doubt became simple belief, and everything was different because I was different. 

Proclaiming Jesus as not only Lord and God, but My Lord and My God is life-changing.

Oh! May the God of hope fill you with joy, fill you with peace, so that your believing lives, filled up with the life-giving energy of the Holy Spirit and will brim over with hope.  Romans 15:13 (The Message Bible)

What would we do with our lives, what would change, how would we live if we really believed Jesus was “My Lord and my God”? 

Prayer

Jesus, you know it is easy for us to fall into doubt.  Today, I choose belief. I believe in you, Jesus.  I believe you have nail prints in your hands and a spear print in our side.  I believe that you have been raised from the dead.  I believe that you are Lord and God.  I believe that you are my Lord and my God.