THURSDAY, APRIL 19
“Eight days later, His disciples were inside again, and Thomas was with them.Thomas answered Him, “My Lord and my God!”
John 20:26, 28 ESV
DOUBTING THE TRUTH: GOD’S PROCESS
One day an employer was having an unusually bad day at the office. As a result, he yelled at one of his employees, which made the employee mad. When the employee arrived home, he made an ugly comment to his wife. In turn, she yelled at their 10-year old son. The son ran outside and kicked the dog. Which made the dog mad, so he bit the boss who had come by to apologize for yelling at his employee.
Normally, yelling and shouting is a bad thing that leads to other bad things. But in John 20:28, Thomas goes from doubting to shouting. After seeing the resurrected Jesus, Thomas shouted, “My Lord and my God!” Eight days earlier Thomas said he don’t believe Jesus was alive and now He makes an ecstatic declaration of faith. Jesus allowed Thomas to wrestle with the testimony of the other disciples for 8 days. But that 8 days led to a changed life.
Apparently, Thomas never doubted again. After Pentecost, the Bible never mentions him again. History, however, tells us Thomas traveled east, preaching the Gospel through Persia. He finally wound up in India where he had a very fruitful ministry. There are several churches in India today that can trace their history back to the time of Thomas. Eventually, the enemies of the Lord took Thomas and killed him with a spear. He died for the Lord he once doubted.
Often God’s process takes much longer than 8 days to get us to a place of faith. C.S. Lewis in, A Grief Observed wrote, “You never know how much you really believe anything until its truth or falsehood becomes a matter of life and death! It is easy to say you believe a rope to be strong as long as you are merely using it to cord a box. But suppose you had to hang by that rope over a precipice. Wouldn’t you then first discover how much you really trusted it?” God uses the process of wrestling and struggle often to get us to a place of strong faith.
Faith is a gift that is strengthened over time through experience. Can you recall things about God that you doubted in the past that you no longer doubt? How long did the process take to grow you to a place of faith? What were the things that helped you in the process? How can you use some of the same things that helped you move from doubt to faith today with your current struggles?