Believe It or Not!

Good morning! Our Scripture for today is John 20: 24-31 Now Thomas (called 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 my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe it.” A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came in 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.” Jesus did many other miraculous signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.

This passage always reminds me of my humanity and Jesus’ perfection. As a grumpy, fault-finding human, I would have jumped on what Thomas did wrong and let him know I was irritated that he didn’t trust me or our friends. I would definitely not let life win; just the opposite. But in His perfection and loving gentleness, Jesus doesn’t condemn Thomas; instead He invites Thomas to touch His wounds and believe. He then uses Thomas’ “I’ll believe it when I see it” attitude to remind us that we won’t have the benefit of seeing before believing. We must believe by faith that Jesus is present when we invite Him to be. The notes in my study Bible sum it up well: “A physical appearance would not make Jesus any more real to us than He is now.” Jesus IS real and Jesus IS alive; seeing and touching Him would not make him any more real or alive – He either is, or He isn’t. We choose to believe, through faith given by God, that Jesus is not only real, He is ALIVE.

Are we like Thomas sometimes, wishing we could touch Him and have a face-to-face conversation? Of course! It is in those times we have to remember He is present and even though He can’t be seen by our weak human eyes, He will always reveal Himself to our hearts – if we only ask and believe. Let’s pray together the prayer from our Easter Sunday worship:

Jesus, I sincerely receive you as my life, my holiness and strength, and I receive all the work and triumph of your resurrection, through which you have conquered sin and death and judgment. Death has no mastery over you, nor does any foul thing. And I have been raised with you to a new life, to live your life – dead to sin and alive to God. I now take my place in your resurrection and in your life, through which I am saved by your life. I reign in life through your life. I receive your life – your humility, love and forgiveness, your integrity in all things, your wisdom, discernment and cunning, your strength, your joy, your union with the Father. Apply to me the fullness of your resurrection. I receive it with thanks and give it total claim to my spirit, soul and body, my heart, mind and will. Amen.

Be bold and be blessed, friends! Jennifer