You want me to believe in God. Give me one good scientific proof that God exits. In the Christian Easter story, Thomas, one of Jesus’ closest followers, wasn’t present when their dead Jesus appeared alive and well, three days after his crucifixion. Thomas refused to believe his friends’ story. Personally, I sympathize with Thomas. I like proof, too.
The Good News in Thomas’ story is that Jesus honored Thomas’ doubt. Jesus came again and this time Thomas was there. Jesus offered Thomas what he needed to believe. Yes, Thomas had questions and yes, he stuck around waiting for answers.
Today, many people question God’s existence and the value of faith but they sure aren’t sticking around to experience any answers. The refrain we hear is, “When I was a kid, my mother made me go to church. Now I don’t have to. Or I learned all that stuff as a kid. It’s not relevant now.
How can we learn or experience anything if we’re not present? When we never pick up a Bible, when we avoid any mention or thought of God, when we scoff at church attendance, of course we won’t believe. Even when something happens that confounds us, that speaks of God, we can always claim co-incidence. Since there is no scientific proof of God’s existence, many of us have decided we don’t need God.
From the beginning of time, our only real proof of God’s existence, and Jesus’ resurrection has come from personal experience. Thomas experienced the living Christ, and so he believed in the resurrection. If you’re filled with questions, I offer you this challenge. Try opening your mind and heart to God. Try prayer. Give God a crack in your armour. For the next six months, give God a try. Talk with your friends who believe, attend church, read some Christian books. If you truly search, you will be surprised by God’s gift of proof.
Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” 27 Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.” (John 20:24-26)
By Rev. Janet Stobie