3rd July 2021
DOUBT NO LONGER BUT BELIEVE
Matthew 6: 24-34
Dear Christians, today we celebrate the feast of St. Thomas who is famous for his doubt of the Lords resurrection. It’s easy to be critical of St. Thomas for his lack of belief reflected in the Gospel. But before you allow yourself to think poorly of him, think about how you would have responded. This is a difficult exercise to do since we know clearly the end of the story. We know Jesus arose from the dead and that, Thomas ultimately came to believe, crying out “My Lord and my God!” But try to put yourself in his situation. What could have prompted Thomas to doubt.
First, Thomas probably doubted, in part, out of extreme sadness and despair. He had hoped that Jesus was the Messiah, he had dedicated the last three years of his life to following Him, and now Jesus was dead...so he thought. This is an important point because very often in life when we encounter some difficulty, disappointment or painful situation, our faith is tested. We are tempted to allow despair to draw us into doubt and when this happens we make decisions based more upon our hurt than upon our faith.
Second, Thomas was also called to deny the physical reality that he witnessed with his own eyes and believe something that was completely “impossible” from an earthly perspective. People simply do not rise from the dead! This simply doesn’t happen, at least from an earthly perspective alone. Even though Thomas had seen Jesus perform such miracles before, it took much faith to believe without seeing with his own eyes. So despair and an apparent impossibility went to the heart of Thomas’ faith and extinguished it.
From this episode, we can have five lessons today:
Do not ever allow despair, disappointment or hurt to be the guide of your decisions or beliefs in life. They are never a good guide.
Do not doubt the power of God to be able to do anything and everything He chooses. In this case, God chose to rise from the dead and so He did. In our own lives, God can do anything He wills. We must believe that and know that what He reveals to us in faith will come to be if we but trust in His provident care.
We believe Jesus not because we have seen Him but because we have been blessed
Jesus who knows us in our humanity and understands us so intimately, offers us peace in the midst of our doubts and fears.
Dear Christians, we should know that, Our Faith is not of our own effort or invention of religion we practice but it is gift from God who has given us something to make our belief in the risen Jesus possible, even when we have never seen the risen Jesus with our physical eyes.
Let us pray:
Lord, I do believe. Help my unbelief. When I am tempted to give in to despair or to doubt Your almighty power over all things in life, help me to turn to You and to trust in You with all my heart. May I cry out, with St. Thomas, “My Lord and my God,” and may I do so even when I see only with the faith You put intO my soul. Jesus, I trust in You.