TUESDAY, APRIL 17
“Eight days later, His disciples were inside again, and Thomas was with them. Although the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you.”
John 20:26 ESV
DOUBTING THE TRUTH: GOD’S PRESENCE
A husband and his wife arose one Sunday morning and the wife dressed for church. It was just about time for the service when she noticed her husband hadn’t moved a finger toward getting dressed. Perplexed, she asked, “Why aren’t you getting dressed for church?” He said, “Cause I don’t want to go.” She asked, “Do you have any reason?” He said, “Yes, I have three good reasons. First, the congregation is cold. Second, no one likes me. And third, I just don’t want to go.” The wife replied, wisely, “Well, honey, I have three reasons why you should go. First, the congregation is warm. Second, there are a few people there who like you. And third, you’re the pastor! So, get dressed!
In John 20:24 Thomas “was not with them when Jesus came,” and Thomas “missed church.” It wasn’t enough for Thomas to hear about the experience of the others with Jesus. Thomas wanted to experience the presence of Jesus for himself. And in John 20:26 Jesus graciously shows back up for the sake of Thomas to help him grow through his doubts. Being in Jesus’ presence made all the difference in Thomas’ faith journey.
We can’t and shouldn’t rely on the experience of others with Jesus. We need our own experiences. The experience and relationship of others with Jesus can challenge and inspire us but at the end of the day we need our own relationship. Can you recall some of the times in the past when you have most sensed the presence of God? Maybe it was in a worship service this past Sunday. That sense of His presence changes everything about our perspective. God is always present. We are just more aware of His presence sometimes than others. If you are struggling with doubts, ask God to help you recognize His presence. If you know someone who is struggling with doubts, pray for them to recognize where God is at work in their life.