Disappointment hung around my neck like a boulder.
Dragging through that bright morning of wrappings and trappings, I felt no joy, and the mood was even heavier. Furrowed brows, teary eyes, and whispers of pain clung to every surface that Christmas morning. A long recovery and a re-establishment of trust needed to happen before doubt could be removed. It would take years and belief in any kind of sentiment was waved away by jaded hearts and hurt relationships. Love wasn’t doubted, but all else was lumped into a box that teetered on the edge of a junk sale garbage pile.
Faith in the Lord wasn’t lost, but it was something that wasn’t relied on or stressed in this season of life. Being a child, I focused on childish processes. I wanted unity and wholeness back, while the adults around me wanted vengeance when the things I wanted didn’t happen for them. Faith was an afterthought, especially when our church home told us that divorcees were frowned upon, never mind the fact the divorcee directing my life was the one left high and dry.
Eventually she grabbed on to a glimmer of hope through long-time family friends and God was no longer an afterthought.
This new reality took hold, and gave hope. What it lacked was the fact it never took the doubt out of my heart. I didn’t doubt in the Lord, but in people, especially the ones that were suppose to care for me. They leave, they run late, they forget, and then when they try to make up for it, they fail.
Decades later, I reflect upon a doubter who became a proclaimer. He had a hard time grasping the gravity of the Lord’s fulfillment of prophecy. When he was given hard evidence, his solidified faith raised the roof and set us all in a motion to be proclaimers as well.
But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name. John 20:31 NIV
Hitting the entire essence of Johns’s Gospel, we can see the whole point summed up in one little verse. John drives home the importance of the goodness, and brings faith that leads to life through Jesus Christ.
The disciples lived through a time where they walked, talked, dined and did life with Jesus. They had an opportunity like no other. They loved their Savior, yet lived with questions and some even doubted. Confusion followed them, but they saw the miracles, heard the truth, and followed Jesus until His last days on earth.
When the prophecies were fulfilled, we all knew they grieved, they huddled together in homes, and probably wrestled with what they should do next. Then they waited, and hope poured in after Mary visited the tomb. She announced to the disciples that Jesus was risen and would soon see them. They waited, probably in anticipation, to see their resurrected savior face to face.
However, there was one who doubted until he could see the Lord. He set up criteria and waited to test the man who would soon present himself.
Doubting Thomas was soon humbled before Jesus and made the most important declaration that a follower could make, a person’s statement in their highest point of faith:
Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God!” 20:28
There is no greater expression of faith that can be found than these words from Thomas’ mouth. It reiterates the point of Christ’s deity. Although blessed in his belief, Thomas is reminded by Jesus’ words that he believes because he has seen. Christ stated, “blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed” vs 29.The Apostle John reminds us that the whole point of the Gospel is to bring knowledge that culminates in faith despite time, place and circumstance. Click To Tweet
We are a blessed people. Having the opportunity to read the history of the world without persecution or filter. Today’s people can seek truth through different medias. Children can learn from their parents instead of through filtered messages by religious leaders. We don’t need to look for signs and miracles. We need to believe in the words that are written through faith and conviction of the Spirit.
The disciples lived in an amazing time in history, walking next to our Lord and Savior, but we have an amazing time now that we can share through the commission established all of those years ago.
The Apostle John reminds us that the whole point of the Gospel is to bring knowledge. This knowledge should culminate in faith despite time, place and circumstance.
Feeling jaded all those years ago left scars on my wounded heart. Forgiveness of the feats has long been given, but memories are burned into my brain. I have learned a lot about forgiveness, but I have established a stronghold of doubt in the honesty in people at times. As I break free from this form of bondage and appreciate my relationships now, I can say that I am not unlike Thomas on either side of his declaration. It takes a lot to trust, and although I never thought to distrust my Jesus, I can now fully and heartedly proclaim, “My Lord and my God” forever.
Join me each Monday as I blog devotions through the Bible. This Lenten season we will be focused on the Book of John, and 1,2, and 3 John. I hope that you discover a good reading plan over the Lenten season. I recommend reading one of the Gospels. There are some excellent resources and plans on the YouVersion Bible App.