Feast of Saint Thomas, Apostle
Tuesday July 3, 2007
I believe that the Apostle Thomas has been given a bad rap. How many times have you heard the phrase, "Doubting Thomas"? It is an insult when one is referred to as a Doubting Thomas. The phrase implies that one is obstinate and deliberately unwilling to believe someone or something. I do not believe that Thomas deserves such a reputation.
Thomas had not had the joy of seeing Jesus yet and so his response to the other Apostles is perfectly understandable. Imagine losing the love of your life and then have someone run to you and tell you they just saw that person! I imagine that I would react angrily and think the one speaking to me was trying to make fun of me. I imagine that is the way Thomas felt. He must have been hurt and angry.
I think that Thomas was brave. He didn't hide his doubt. He voiced his pain instead of just repressing it. I have never liked the phrase, "fake it till you make it". I think it is dismissive of how one feels. When we don't express our doubts and fears, they weigh us down. Thomas reacts honestly. When Thomas does actually see Jesus, he responds with humility and recognizes he was wrong and admits it. Jesus doesn't scold Thomas but actually offers to him the very things he said would be needed in order for him to believe.
How many of us admit to believing something but secretly hold an opposing view? Not exactly an honest thing to do. I believe that if we do not give voice to our doubts and our fears then those things have power over us. I think it is good for us to admit our doubts and then ask God to help us. Lord, help my disbelief! Honesty with God is a sure fire way for God to be able to break down our doubts and fears.
Let's not "fake it" but rather be honest and allow God to help our disbelief.