Saint Thomas, Apostle (Feast)
You are … members of the household of God. (Ephesians 2:19)
We all have certain places or institutions that have a special place in our lives. Perhaps it’s our hometown, our school sports team, or a political party. But these loyalties tend to pale in comparison to the loyalty we feel toward our family and close friends. So when Paul tells us that we have become “members of the household of God,” part of God’s own family, it means a lot (Ephesians 2:19)!
Consider the apostle Thomas’ struggle with this new identity. He loved the Lord, and surely he longed for the reports of Jesus’ resurrection to be true, but he still couldn’t overcome the limitations of what his own human reason told him. So Jesus met Thomas where he was and brought him to belief. But notice what he says, “Have you come to believe because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and have believed” (John 20:29). Blessed, in other words, are those whose loyalty to Jesus helps them move beyond their own limitations and reach out in faith instead.
It’s interesting. Committing our highest loyalties to Jesus actually helps us in all our other commitments. When we put our faith in him, we find new wisdom for raising our children and loving our spouse. Living for Christ opens us to the Holy Spirit, who can empower us to make a good contribution at work even as our peace witnesses to the joy of the gospel. Human logic and reason can offer us some insights in these areas, but imagine how much more we can receive when we are connected to the Lord!
Do you find yourself sounding like Thomas occasionally? “As soon as God proves such and such to me, I’ll be willing to do so-and-so.” Jesus will work with us at those times, as he did with Thomas, but he wants us to move beyond setting conditions. He wants our identity as members of his household to loom larger than anything else so that it can guide everything we do and say. He wants to be our shepherd and our friend so that as we surrender to him, we can hear him tell us, “Peace be with you” (John 20:26).
“Lord, thank you that you have brought me into your family.”WAU