Brian’s Reflection: The Weekend, Saturday, April 10, 2010
[ Easter II in the Christian Kalendar ]
[Thomas] said to them, "Unless I see the mark of
the nails in his hands, and put my finger in the mark
of the nails and my hand in his side, I will not believe.
John 20 – the Gospel reading for Easter II, Year C RCL
Actually, I’ve gotten rather tired of the “usual stuff” that I and others have said about Thomas. Doubt is important; seeing for yourself is important; Thomas was just looking for assurance; etc. That sort of thing.
What this says to me today is, No one else can live your Life for you. The encounter between Jesus and Thomas is a powerful symbol of a foundational Mystery about Life. Every one of us must find our center, must find whatever it is that is the fullness of Life unique to each of us, and in which we all share as living beings. Many call this this Energy of Being, this Energy of Life, “God”. Every human being must merge with “Jesus” – or whatever or Whoever “Jesus” may be in the World’s faiths and philosophies – in order to achieve Wholeness.
Sometimes, like Thomas, we are not “there” – not on the path of convergence for whatever reason. Usually this is our own choice, consciously or unconsciously, though the circumstances of Life can and do certainly lead us away, lead us to Avoidance, to Fantasy, to Fear. In the story, Thomas was later present, and so did have a personal encounter with Life. I suppose the lesson is, Engage as often as possible – “Lay hold on Life”, to quote the old hymn.
The marks on Jesus are marks of authenticity. I think we know them when we see them.