John 20:24-31 But Thomas, sometimes the Twin, one of the Twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. The other disciples told him, “We saw the Master.” But he said, “Unless I see the nail holes in His hands, put my finger in the nail holes, and stick my hand in His side, I won’t believe it.” Eight days later, His disciples were again in the room. This time Thomas was with them. Jesus came through the locked doors, stood among them, and said, “Peace to you.” Then He focused His attention on Thomas. “Take your finger and examine My hands. Take your hand and stick it in my side. Don’t be unbelieving. Believe.” Thomas said, “My Master! My God!” Jesus said, “So, you believe because you’ve seen with your own eyes. Even better blessings are in store for those who believe without seeing.”
Jesus provided far more God-revealing signs than are written down in this book. These are written down so you will believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and in the act of believing, have real and eternal life in the way He personally revealed it.”
I have heard and read this story many times in my life. I noticed a few different things this time.
- But Thomas, sometimes the Twin, one of the Twelve, was not with them when Jesus came.
Don’t you hate it when you are not “in” on something “big?” Haven’t we all had an experience when our family, or friends, or co-workers were all hanging out and just the time when we leave the room for just a few minutes, something really “exciting” happens – and we just missed it? Or we are sick the day a huge announcement is made? Let’s call it a “Miracle Moment.”
No matter how well the group re-tells the “thing”or “Miracle Moments” we missed, it is never quite as “real” or exciting as if we had experienced it ourselves. So, taking Thomas’s side for just a few seconds, the poor guy missed out on however Jesus appeared to the others – bummer! And no matter how awesome of a job they do in retelling, it is very difficult to not be a little jealous that he/we missed “it.”
Application for me – I want to be a really good listener to other people when they share “God stories” and “Miracle Moments” that God has done in their lives, and to not be so “jealous” that I wasn’t “there” that I miss out on the magnitude of His work that I don’t “hear” or “see” it through someone else.
- “Unless I see the nail holes in His hands, put my finger in the nail holes, and stick my hand in His side, I won’t believe it.”
Aren’t we the same as Thomas sometimes? We missed out on someone else’s “Miracle Moment” and we react just like Thomas. “Well, I wasn’t there. Well, I am not going to believe what so and so said unless I hear it with my own ears.” I need to stop being so arrogant and close-minded. I need to let others have the joy of seeing something, hearing something “big” about God, about Jesus, about the Holy Spirit in their lives and take their word for it – and enjoy it and believe it – not only if I also get to hear or see the same big “Miracle Moment.”
On the flip side, many times, I have experienced “Miracle Moments” in my private Bible reading time. I have rushed downstairs to “tell everyone” only to be stared at with blank faces, or half-hearted appreciation of what just happened to me. It hurts. It kind of deflates the bubble of excitement and awe that just happened.
Application for me? Don’t do that to someone who is excited to tell me of a “Miracle Moment” in their lives. Try my best to listen and be excited and believe their eye-witness account of a miraculous event!
- Eight days later, His disciples were again in the room. This time Thomas was with them. Jesus came through the locked doors, stood among them, and said, “Peace to you.” Then He focused His attention on Thomas.
I am overwhelmed of how kind Jesus is to Thomas. He knows that Thomas “missed” the previous “reveal.” He must know how hard it was to be one of the Twelve, and be left out. Thomas missed the “Miracle Moment.” Jesus also must know how hard it is for us to get excited when someone else experiences a “Miracle Moment”and we just have to take their word for it. So, eight days later, He focused His attention on Thomas. He gave Thomas his very own “Miracle Moment”.
Yes, I know there are many other theological applications of this story and Thomas’s doubt.
But for me today – I am seeing a different angle. How many times in my own life, have I missed out on something “big” others got to see it but I didn’t? Many. And how many times did my precious Savior come back around again and give another “Miracle Moment” for me to see? Many.
How about you? Do you have a hard time believing other people’s “Miracle Moments?”
Jesus says we are blessed if we can believe with-out seeing. Obviously we believe He died and was raised to life! We believe that with all of our hearts! My goodness, if we can believe THAT "Miracle Moment", surely we can believe other people's "Miracle Moments" even if we are not there, too!
Have you had “Miracle Moments” and couldn’t find anyone to listen to and appreciate your testimony?
Do you have eyes to see the thousands of times God gives you your very own “Miracle Moment?”
Have a Miracle Moment kind of day - either someone else's - or your own!