There is a long journey between the words “I will not believe” and “my Lord and my God”.
When we read John 20:19-29 we find that is exactly the journey Thomas takes. When Jesus first appears, Thomas is not present. Then the disciples try and tell him of Jesus miraculous appearance… he says, “I will not believe”. Not only does he say that, but he says it specifically in reference to being able to touch Jesus and witness for himself a dead man resurrected to life. If he could only TOUCH Jesus and SEE Jesus… then he would believe.
A week later Jesus actually appears to the disciples in the exact same way they saw him the previous week… except this time Thomas was with them. Jesus addresses Thomas directly and asks him to TOUCH and SEE the new reality of Jesus’ life. When Thomas witnesses this he exclaims, “my Lord and my God”.
Of course the long journey between these two statements wasn’t completed in the week between. No, Thomas desperately WANTED to believe but couldn’t. Thomas was a faithful follower of Jesus during Jesus whole public life and ministry (three years). He even pledges to “go and die with him (John 11:16).
Like most ‘normal’ people… Thomas found the resurrection of Jesus is easy to doubt and hard to believe.
Jesus offered him some pretty solid proof. Proof that we, today, don’t necessarily get. But we can still ‘touch’ and ‘see’ when we commit our lives to love, positive health and change, service to others, and a daily time of prayer/reflection/meditation.
When we do these things… Jesus is sure to show up in our lives in the form of positive transformation. Try it!