I love that we read the story of Thomas’ encounter with Jesus after Easter! Thomas’ humanity shines through in full color. He struggles and wrestles with the rest of the disciples story. They told him they saw Jesus. They SAW Jesus! Because he wasn’t with them, because he has a hard time believing the rest of his friends, because he needed a little extra proof- Thomas got the moniker Doubting Thomas.
For many reasons, I am not sure this is fair. Sure, he doubts, just as most of us might have and maybe even do from time to time. But that is not the sum total of his discipleship. He doesn’t remain in his doubt, but through his wrestling and having his questions answered he is able to believe. His faith is increased.
Sometimes, as we read John’s account of Thomas’ conversation with Jesus, it is read as a rebuke when Jesus says, “Do you believe because you see me? Happy are those who don’t see and yet believe.” We assume that Jesus is angry at Thomas for needing proof. However, if you look at the verses before and after, Jesus does not only appear to Thomas, but he allows him to put his hand in his wounds, to touch him- he gives him tangible proof. Jesus also does many miraculous signs with his disciples present. He gives Thomas proof, but he also gives the others abundant proof as well.
Maybe Jesus wasn’t angry after all. Maybe he was simply meeting the disciples where they were- time and time again. Maybe he was simply preparing them once again for the time when he wouldn’t be there. Maybe he was preparing us- the modern-day disciples of Jesus Christ- to have faith when we do not have him standing in the room with us and allowing us to put our hands in his side. Instead, we wrestle with our questions, we only see glimpses of his miraculous signs and his power in our lives and in our world, and yet we believe.
What are your questions? How has your faith grown as you have wrestled with them?


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