Today's Gospel: John 20, 19-31 - Second Sunday of Easter
On the day of His resurrection, Jesus appeared in a locked room with ten of his closest followers, the apostles, and revealed the fullness of God’s Plan of rebuilding the temple on the third day, as he said he would. Their faith was confirmed and they were overjoyed. By breathing on them, He conferred power to them. He said, “Receive the Holy Spirit” and “Whose sins you forgive are forgiven, and whose sins you retain are retained.” Jesus gave this authority to the Church for the sacrament of reconciliation, to absolve sins (CCC 553).
Eight days later, Thomas, who was absent on the Day of Resurrection, was with the apostles and Jesus appeared again. Thomas earlier declared he would not believe UNLESS he touched the wounds of Jesus. Jesus exposed his scars and encouraged Thomas to “believe.” Thomas was healed of the wound of his disbelief. He responded with “My Lord and my God!” – a total surrender.
St Gregory the Great said it best:
“It was not by chance but in God’s providence. In a marvellous way God’s mercy arranged that the disbelieving disciple, in touching the wounds of his master’s body, should heal our wounds of disbelief. The disbelief of Thomas has done more for our faith than the faith of the other disciples. As he touches Christ and is won over to belief, every doubt is cast aside and our faith is strengthened."
Thomas was not punished for his disbelief, but God’s mercy healed his wounds of disbelief as he heals our wounds of disbelief. God's kindness is meant to lead us to believe and repent. God’s mercy of forgiveness is consoling. Let us embrace the gift of believing with grateful hearts for God’s generosity. We are so blessed!
Jesus extends his mercy of believing to each of us. Have I asked Him to heal, help me through my hurts, angers and fears, and to become free to love as He loves without conditions?
My Lord and My God, I believe; help my unbelief!
Copyright 2016 Gloria Winn
Wife, mother, grandmother, listener and lover of God. Lay ministry: marriage preparation, retreats to youth, adults, married couples, listener, speaker, writer. Author of Tears (available on Amazon).
Blogs: “For His Glory”, “Who Am I? God’s!", and “Small Things with Great Love”