Scripture Reflection for the 2nd Sunday of Easter
by Brandon Jubar
Reading I: Acts 4:32-35
Reading II: 1 John 5:1-6
GOSPEL: John 20:19-31
Doubt, Don’t Disbelieve
There are times when we read the Bible and have to stretch the imagination in order to identify with the people and their situations. This week’s Gospel reading doesn’t fit that category, however. The doubts that Thomas faces are the same doubts that many Catholics face today. How is it that we can truly believe that which we cannot see, feel or hear?
Seeing is Believing
Luckily for Thomas, Jesus visited the disciples a second time while he was with them. Thomas was able to see and touch Jesus’ wounds, and hear Jesus’ voice assure him. Wouldn’t it be nice if Jesus popped in on us to eliminate our doubts?
Yet in this very story, Jesus foreshadows the struggles that generations to come would face. Jesus says, “Have you come to believe because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and have believed.”
Many of us go through times in our faith journey when we have doubts. The reasons for such doubt can be as different as the people experiencing it. One important thing to keep in mind, however, is that doubt is not the same as disbelief. Doubt means that I’m not sure, while disbelief means that I am.
Doubting Means Questioning
If I doubt something, then there are unanswered questions in my mind. And as long as I am questioning, I am still learning and growing. If I am questioning, the chances are good that I will continue along my faith journey as I seek the answers I need.
If, on the other hand, I disbelieve something, then the case is closed. I have stopped questioning because I have already reached a conclusion. In essence, my faith journey has ended. I have made my decision, and there is no need for further reflection.
So don’t be afraid to doubt, and don’t feel guilty if you do. Embrace the feeling, discover the questions that still need to be answered, and continue down the path. For in seeking out those answers, you will inevitably come closer to understanding God’s truth.
Go ahead and doubt, Thomas. But don’t fall into disbelief.
What is something that has made you doubt your faith?
Do you tend to doubt the Church or Christ? Why?
How can you keep from falling into disbelief?
Copyright 2006-2015 by Brandon Jubar
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