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“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!”
Out of Hiding
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Each year on the Sunday after Easter, we hear the story of Thomas. It’s one most of us are likely familiar with: Thomas missing the first appearance of the risen Jesus, and not believing the others when they tell him about it. So Jesus returns another time, and allows Thomas to touch him, to feel the proof that this is real.
One would think that hearing this same story year after year would be boring, or repetitive. But instead it feels like something I can’t hear enough.
Because we are all a lot like Thomas.
We have come to the empty tomb, we have heard proclaimed “He is Risen” and yet sometimes this Easter story just seems too good to be true. We doubt. We wonder if it could really be FOR ME.
Thomas has his moment of great faith – where he believes – and cries out, “My Lord and My God!”
But before he got to that place, he was allowed to voice his doubt.
What Thomas teaches us, year after year, is that we CAN have faith and still have questions.
That faith and certainty are two very different things.
Questions are an important part of our life in faith, and asking them, expressing them, not being worried about how we are perceived – this is how we grow.
And even better – Thomas’ doubts didn’t change the reality of what had happened.
Jesus still rose.
Love still won. Despite the questions that follow.
Our doubts and questions don’t change the promises for us either.
When we wonder if the Easter story is really FOR US, the answer is YES.
It already happened. For you.
Thomas voiced his doubt, and then had an experience of God.
Questions to Ponder or Discuss
1. What was it that made you first believe? Did you have proof?
2. What things cause you to doubt what you have heard?
3. What are some questions you still have, despite your faith?
When Jesus rose from the dead and appeared to the disciples, he told them that now was the time to be sent into the world. So we are told the same thing. It’s time to stop hiding. Our doubts and fears might be holding us back, but God is with us and leading us into the world to share the good news that we have heard.
This week, take some time to reflect on what it was that first made you believe in God. Then reflect on any moments or experiences you have had of God since then. Think about ways you can share these moments with those around you. And GO DO IT!
It’s time to Come Out of Hiding.