So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord.” But he 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 20:25 NRSV)
Jesus met Mary in her grief, and he met Thomas in his doubting. This disciple has gone by the nickname “Doubting Thomas.” We don’t really know why he doubted. Perhaps he was usually a cynic or a pessimist. Or maybe he was dealing with grief the way so many have, through denial. Whatever the reason, Jesus met him in the upper room and addressed him according to his circumstances.
There is no indication someone told Jesus that Thomas had doubts, but Jesus knew, and spoke to him accordingly. He said, “Put your finger here . . . reach out your hand. . . . Do not doubt but believe” (John 20:27 NRSV).
Once again, Jesus makes himself known in a way that suits each person’s circumstances and needs. Mary did not need Jesus to say, “Put your finger here,” and Thomas needed more than a mere recitation of his name. Jesus met Mary according to her grief and Thomas according to his doubts. And he meets us still, in whatever situation or condition we may be. If you know grief, doubt, suffering, joy, or whatever, that is where he will meet you. And in a way that meets your need. —Jon Brown
As you pray, share your need with Jesus and ask him to meet you there. Take time to quiet yourself to hear him.
About the Author
Jon Brown is the lead pastor of Pillar Church in Holland, MI. With his beloved wife, Kristyn, Jon is the proud father of 4 daughters: Lydia, Tabitha, Miriah, and Ava. He has been the keynote speaker at a number of events including, The Nicaraguan Pastors Conference of the Moravian Church, The Cascades Family Bible Camp, and many events at Hope College. He is a regular writer for the Words of Hope devotionals as well. Urging the church forward to participate in the mission of Christ in the world is where Jon finds the deepest joy and greatest sense of purpose.