ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

"Doubting" Thomas - We Can Identify

Updated on April 7, 2013

See and Believe!

I Have Met Thomas and I Am Him!

Entering this Lent, I decided to undertake the Spiritual Exercises of Saint Ignatius, self-directed, for the third time. I did so this year because I was feeling empty, distant from God. It had been a tough 2012, filled with challenges but also blessings. I was feeling physically and emotionally exhausted. Spiritually, I was dry, parched. God seemed a distant abstraction rather than a personal friend.

Three years ago in January, I had major surgery. I had reached to point of total surrender, entrusting myself, my future, and my family totally to God. I experienced the greatest peace I had ever known! I truly had come to the point where I had every confidence that I would be cured by the surgery, or able to persevere if I was not cured, or emerge from the surgery in Heaven.

The surgery was successful and my health improved. But as I returned to my work and my family responsibilities, I began to slowly take back all the things that I had given over to God in my surrender. Of course, as I did, I experienced highs and lows and suffered the consequences of my humanity.

I continued to pray, probably even more than before the surgery, but I found few answers. Whenever the circumstances of my life or the events in the world made no sense, I just dropped back to the words from Isaiah “my ways are not your ways.” Faith but without substance.

So in an effort to trust, to surrender, to find peace in acceptance of the unknown and unknowable, I took up again the Spiritual Exercises. The exercise for Holy Saturday called for meditation on what one of the people close to Jesus would have experienced on that day, that time between the coming of the darkness and the dawning of the light. For reasons I can’t explain, other than the prompting of the Holy Spirit, I selected Thomas the Apostle, “Doubting Thomas.”

Jesus’s crucifixion and death must have struck Thomas to the core. Reflecting back from the story in John’s Gospel, Thomas must have felt confused and deeply disturbed. He had seen the miracles and heard the preaching. He thought he had it all figured out. How could this happen? He surely doubted that Jesus was the Son of God and the Messiah. He may have despaired. The recent History Channel presentation of “The Bible” contains an excellent portrayal of Thomas as a “what if” skeptic.

Which brings us to the scene of the Gospel for the First Sunday in Easter. His fellow apostles tell him that they have seen Jesus, that he has risen. Thomas demands evidence, proof. Not just eyewitness testimony, but physical evidence of the highest order. Physical evidence that he himself sees and touches. Of course, Jesus provides it. Thomas goes on to evangelize and to suffer a martyr’s death. In an ironic twist, according to apocryphal accounts, Thomas was the only one to witness the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. He was at first derided and dismissed until he presented Mary’s belt, which she entrusted to him as she was assumed.

Thomas’s problem on Holy Saturday was mine. He thought too small. He failed to see that as useful as human reason and logic may be to guide us through the affairs of this world, they are totally inadequate to grasp the mystery of God and his ways. As Paul observed, to the believer all that is worldly wise is foolish, and to the worldly the believer seems as the fool.

Jesus rocked Thomas out of his worldly frame of reference by rising from the dead and appearing to him and the other apostles in his risen state. As he did when he took human form, he came into the realm of worldly wisdom when he gave Thomas the physical evidence that he had demanded. But for me his words to Thomas must now be my touchstone – blessed is he who does not see but believes.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)