So the other disciples said to 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 into the nail marks and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.” (John 20: 25)
I once thought of Thomas the Apostle with disdain. How could he not believe? He witnessed Jesus do miracles! Jesus told him He was going to rise from the dead! Multiple witnesses said they saw him alive! Why was it so hard to believe?
This past Divine Mercy Sunday, as I listened to a homily about trust and mercy, it hit me: I am just like Thomas!
I struggle to trust that God can heal the difficult situations and people in my life. I thank God when things are going well, but when they are not, my first thought is, “how can I fix this?” I try to control people and situations because part of me refuses to accept that God is in control.
Like Thomas, I struggle to believe God is intervening in my life because He doesn’t do it the way I thought He would. It’s silly to think that I don’t trust God because I lack imagination. After all, I have seen firsthand that God, through a 5-minute secular podcast or a chance encounter with a stranger, can do more to change my alcoholic husband’s heart than months of my nagging and manipulation did. Yet, sometimes I still need more proof to believe God can heal us.
I am just starting to understand the connection between trust and mercy. There is a reason the Divine Mercy image says “Jesus, I trust in You,” not “Jesus, have mercy on me.” It is harder to receive a gift you don’t believe God will give to you. Like Thomas and me, you might miss it because it doesn’t come the way you expected.
Jesus, I trust in You! Lord help my unbelief!
Copyright 2018 Monica Portogallo