Thought for the Day – 3 July
“Poor Thomas! He made one remark and has been branded as “Doubting Thomas” ever since. But if he doubted, he also believed. He made what is certainly the most explicit statement of faith in the New Testament: “My Lord and My God!” and, in so expressing his faith, gave Christians a prayer that will be said till the end of time. He also occasioned a compliment from Jesus to all later Christians: “Have you come to believe because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and have believed” (John 20:29).
Thomas should be equally well-known for his courage. Perhaps what he said was impetuous—since he ran, like the rest, at the showdown—but he can scarcely have been insincere when he expressed his willingness to die with Jesus. The occasion was when Jesus proposed to go to Bethany after Lazarus had died. Since Bethany was near Jerusalem, this meant walking into the very midst of his enemies and to almost certain death. Realising this, Thomas said to the other apostles, “Let us also go to die with him” (John 11:16b).
Thomas shares the lot of Peter the impetuous, James and John, the “sons of thunder,” Philip and his foolish request to see the Father—indeed all the apostles in their weakness and lack of understanding. We must not exaggerate these facts, however, for Christ did not pick worthless men. But their human weakness again points up the fact that holiness is a gift of God, not a human creation – it is given to ordinary men and women with weaknesses, it is God who gradually transforms the weaknesses into the image of Christ, the courageous, trusting and loving one.” Fr. Don Miller, OFM
Saint John Chrysostom said about Thomas: “Thomas, being once weaker in faith than the other apostles, toiled through the grace of God more bravely, more zealously and tirelessly than them all, so that he went preaching over nearly all the earth, not fearing to proclaim the Word of God to savage nations.” If Thomas can be transformed, so, too, can we. When our faith is shaken, we think of Thomas’ doubt… but we also must think of his courage. What will we accomplish when our faith overflows within us, pouring forth in the courageous acclamation, “My Lord and My God!”?
St Thomas, Apostle of Christ, Pray for us!