Sunday, April 3, 2016

Just One Touch

When it was evening on that day, the first day of the week, and the doors of the house where the disciples had met were locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, "Peace be with you." After he said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord. Jesus said to them again, "Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you." When he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained."
But Thomas (who was called the Twin), one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, "We have seen the Lord." But he said to them, "Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands, and put my finger in the mark of the nails and my hand in his side, I will not believe."
A week later his disciples were again in the house, and Thomas was with them. Although the doors were shut, Jesus came and stood among them and said, "Peace be with you." Then he said to Thomas, "Put your finger here and see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it in my side. Do not doubt but believe." Thomas answered him, "My Lord and my God!" Jesus said to him, "Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have come to believe."
Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book. But these are written so that you may come to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that through believing you may have life in his name. John 20:19-31

Believing is a funny thing. In an age when everything seems to have a scientific explanation, and we can know where we come from by a DNA swab, believing the resurrection can be a challenge for many. We want miracles but we have been trained to test, prod and second guess. Our faith in Jesus is a living faith, and we follow a living and loving Creator, who incarnate in Jesus, has set us free from the bonds of death. 

This first Sunday after Easter, we hear the story of Thomas who is sometimes called Doubting Thomas. He is one of the twelve but was not with them in the locked room, where they hid in fear. Although they thought he had risen, they were not secure in their belief and were much more assured when he was present with them. Thomas came later, but Jesus understood his need and his confusion. Thomas touches Jesus and through that living touch, is solidified in his faith, anchored to the living God as he never had been. Thomas goes on to be one of the greatest evangelists, going far away from his fisherman's life to share the living.

Today, I ask God to help me be grounded and trusting as Thomas. May we reach out to God in our need, knowing that we are simply one touch away from knowing. We are a small step away from being so grounded in the heart of God that fear rolls completely away.

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