A common refrain in the reports on the resurrection appearances is “I have seen the Lord,” or words to that effect. Being an eyewitness to any event gives greater credence to a person’s description of that event than if they had not been present. One of the questions that might arise from the above discussion is: “Is it necessary to see the Risen Jesus in order to believe in Him?” The answer to this question is both ‘yes’ and ‘no!’ As Jesus tells Thomas at the end of today’s passage, it is possible to believe and be blessed without physically seeing Jesus. Therefore, faith is not dependent upon physically being able to see the resurrected Christ!

On the other hand perhaps we can also say that in a certain sense anyone who has faith can say that they have ‘seen’ Jesus. This ‘seeing’ being done with the eyes of faith and having nothing to do with physical sight! Thus it would be quite correct for a person of faith to say that they have seen the Risen Jesus, for example, in and through various events in their lives. This is a different type of ‘seeing’, however, it is ‘seeing’ in a certain sense of the word!

Thomas proclaims his faith and trust in the resurrected Jesus upon seeing Him standing in his presence. We Christians of the 21st century are called to proclaim the same sort of trust in and through the eyes of faith. Rarely will any of us physically see the person of Jesus, but through faith we will see Him through the ways in which He is present in our lives. Let us pray for eyes that can see and hearts that will believe in order to grow in our faith!

How do we facilitate this type of ‘seeing?’ In order to learn to trust more and more in God we need to purify our hearts of all the distractions of sin and the world. This will be a life-long challenge! It requires incredible dedication and commitment. We have to ask ourselves whether or not we are willing to pay the price. Jesus reminds us in the beatitudes that it is the pure of heart who shall see God. (Mt 5:8)

How do I cope with the doubts that come against me in my faith? What can I do to try to lessen them? How can I grow in trust?

Lord Jesus, to have seen you is to have seen the Father. To see your work is to se the Father’s work. Help me to recognize your work in my life and teach me to trust more fully in your love.