“Have you come to believe because you have seen me, (Thomas)? Blessed are those who have not seen and have believed.” Jn 20:29
Doubting Thomas is a helpful Gospel figure to most of us. When we lose our way, or get hurt by someone from whom we were not expecting a blow, Thomas draws us to himself. It is natural to doubt, even necessary. No one can expect to skate through life without a crack in the ice. We trip, we fall, but most of all we rise again to begin our journey day after day.
At the same time, we should not take faith for granted. Thomas did not wander away from Christ because he was pursuing something or someone else. There is no scriptural evidence that he consciously chose to turn away from the One he thought was the Messiah. Rather, Jesus' awful, shaming crucifixion and death turned his world upside down and left him hanging over a cliff without a strong rope. Finding himself overwhelmed and lost, Thomas resisted listening to the testimony of others for fear he would be hurt again, until he encountered the Lord face to face. Only then did the mercy of Jesus reclaim him and set him free.
No matter how badly we fail, no matter how often we turn away from God, God will show us mercy if only we let go of our pride and shame and accept God's direction.
Today, show mercy to someone who is lost.
Who has shown you mercy when you least expected it?