Do you remember the story in the bible about Thomas? Poor Thomas wasn’t there when Jesus appeared to the disciples, so when he returned the other disciples told him excitedly, “We have seen the Lord!”
Thomas said to them: “Unless I see the scars of the nails in his hands and put my finger on those scars and my hand in his side, I will not believe.”
A week later the disciples were together again indoors, and Thomas was with them. The doors were locked, but Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you.”
Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and look at my hands; then stretch out your hand and put it in my side. Stop your doubting, and believe!”
Thomas fell on his knees and exclaimed, “My Lord and my God!”
Jesus said to Thomas (and to us), “Do you believe because you see me? How happy are those who believe without seeing me!”
Amazing story, isn’t it? And yet how many of us could say that we are a lot like Thomas.
I would not consider myself to be a stupid person. Coming from the Sikh religion, I studied, investigated, questioned, and questioned again whether this Jesus was real. However, even after satisfying the intellect it came down to a matter of faith. The evidence certainly indicates that Jesus lived and died and rose again. But for me to believe I had to have faith. Unlike Thomas, I have not had the opportunity to touch Jesus’ scarred hands – and yet the presence of Jesus in my life is real. By faith, I believe.
We don’t see Jesus alive today as people did during his life and after his resurrection. Yet we know that he was alive through scripture. We also experience His light in our lives and in the world, and we see the power of His love in people’s lives.
God exists in all things and, with faith, our eyes are opened to see God at work.
This reminds me of a story of an elderly lady who was well known for her faith and for her boldness in talking about it. She would stand on her front porch and shout, “Praise the LORD!!
Next door to her lived an atheist who would get so angry at her proclamations he would shout, “There ain’t no Lord!”
Hard times set in on the elderly lady, and she prayed for God to send her some assistance. She stood on her porch and shouted, “Praise the Lord! God, I need some food! I am having a hard time. Please Lord, send me some groceries!”
The next morning the lady went out on her porch, noticed a large bag of groceries sitting there and shouted, “Praise The Lord”.
The neighbour jumped out from behind a bush and said, “Aha! I told you there was no Lord. God didn’t buy those groceries – I did!”
The lady started jumping up and down and clapping her hands and said, “Praise the Lord! He not only sent me groceries, but He made the devil pay for them. Praise the Lord!”
Now that’s faith!