Just last Sunday we celebrated Easter with all of its joy and promise. Have you ever wished that you had been there for the grand event? The strange piece about our Biblical story is how those who first heard the good news – doubted. The gospel of Luke records that after the women went to the tomb and came back with news that Jesus was alive, his disciples doubted. In fact the scripture says, “These words seemed to them an idle tale, and they did not believe them.” Luke 24:11
Perhaps, you like those first disciples, harbor your own doubts about Jesus. You would not be the first Christian to do so. Doubt and faith intermingle on our Christian walk. There are moments when everything is clear, defined and we have no doubt at all about God or about God’s presence in our lives. But at other moments, doubts grow. If we don’t doubt God’s existence, we doubt God’s love, God’s intentions in our lives, we doubt if God cares. We doubt God’s power to make us whole people.
John Wesley was advised to “Preach faith until you have faith.” The founder of Methodism came to faith slowly, stumbling along the way. While, Thomas, premier skeptic for all time, is recorded in the gospel of John as a doubter. He wasn’t there on that Resurrection night with the others. He was painfully aware of the finality of death and not about to get his hopes up that Jesus – his friend and confident was alive. A week later Jesus visits Thomas and reveals himself to his friend. Jesus doesn’t mock Thomas’s doubt. He offers grace. He meets Thomas at his need.
Most us will never have that kind of encounter with the divine the first disciples experienced. For most of us, there is that gradual awakening to the reality of resurrection. A presence or peace comes to us – that warms our hearts with God’s truth. We look around us and note that Spring, always follows Winter. Butterflies emerge from cocoons, and there is this sense that God has planned creation in such a way, that we might believe. May God gift you with insight and faith – the faith to see God’s light and love present in our world, to sense God’s presence, to know you are loved.
This is beautifully written!