Seeing is Believing
Jesus himself stood among them…Luke 24:36b
We are still in the Easter season. Still being raised up. Still being filled with hope.
The disciples are huddled together behind locked doors. They are afraid of the authorities. They know what they have seen. How Jesus was mocked, tried, and crucified. They know the full penalty of being guilty by association.
Like Thomas, they are filled with doubts and fears. But much to their surprise, Jesus is out looking for them and when he finds them he blesses them. “Peace be with you.”
Jesus does not chastise or criticize. He does not condemn, scold or ridicule. He anticipates their bewilderment and offers himself to them. According to John’s gospel, he breathes on them and inflates their lungs with his very own breath.
What wondrous love is this from our Lord who is forever consistent in his engagement with his followers – both then and now? Jesus says, Look at my hands and my feet. Touch me. See for yourself that it is I. Touch so you can believe.
At best, that’s what we do in the church. We help people see the presence of God in our lives and in the world. Because we are made of flesh, we don’t always get it right. Ask anybody, we make mistakes galore. But we keep working at it because we know that there is a power beyond ourselves.
Jesus says that those who have not seen and yet believe are blessed. Easter faith is all about believing when we don’t see, obeying when we don’t understand, going on when we don’t feel like it; and trusting that whatever lies ahead, Jesus will show up when we need to be assured.
Prayer: Good Lord, help us live as Easter people.