Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Blockheads Welcome

In chapter 24 of Luke’s Gospel the Risen Lord Jesus Christ is said to appear to all of the apostles. He asks, “Why are you frightened, and why do doubts arise in your hearts?” So, it seems that, poor old “Doubting” Thomas was not alone in his doubts. It was, as Jesus points out, a matter that afflicted each one. Yet is was from this, less than perfect, pile of people with blocked heads and blocked hearts that God’s Holy Spirit built a community of faithful people.

Thomas was given a chance to believe. Peter, after having denied Jesus three times was given a chance to declare his love. The disciples on the road away from Jerusalem after the crucifixion didn’t know that it was Jesus walking with them. Yet each of these, and all of the disciples too, were given an opportunity to encounter the Risen Lord. Perhaps they didn’t deserve the opportunity, but it was given to them anyway. And, according to God, their doubts were no reason to withhold such an encounter.

The same thing applies today. None of us, I guess, are worthy of an encounter with the Risen Lord, but God will grant us the privilege anyway. And there’s no telling when God will be revealed. It might even be when we’re locked up in a room (real or otherwise), too afraid to show ourselves outside, that God chooses to break in.

The disciples had blocked heads and hearts and God broke in on them. Our blocked heads and hearts will be unblocked too, because that’s the way God wants it. It might be in the words of a song, a timely phone call, a much needed hug, a prayer, a book, a sunset… Our part is to recognize it when it happens and to say YES, that was God, unblocking my blocked head and heart, turning my doubts into rivers of joy. Alleluia!

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