“You’re kidding!”, “I don’t believe it!”, “You’re pulling my leg!” With these and other expressions we exclaim our disbelief at something that has been said or reported to us as having been done. Thomas seems to be doing only the human thing when he asked for proof from the disciples who had claimed to have seen the Lord. He got more than he bargained for!
Thomas refuses to believe that Jesus is alive without physical proof and Jesus is willing to accommodate. He returns and invites Thomas to see, touch and believe. We, like Thomas, need to encounter the risen Jesus in tangible ways. The risen Lord is relentless in bringing us to the same belief he coaxed out of Thomas. Today the “proof” comes in his being present to us and in his offer of peace. It comes to us through the community of believers who reinforce for each other that Jesus is indeed alive and among us because His Spirit is within us.
Jesus is present in the stranger who reaches out to help us. Jesus is present in the person who recognizes in us and calls forth talent we didn’t know we had. Jesus is present when we listen to one another, when we forgive one another, when we encourage another.
Through these acts what happened to Thomas happens for us today.