People of the Christian faith around the world will be celebrating the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ this week-end. People who never come to church at any other time in the year except Christmas plays, weddings, and funeral, will show up at church on Sunday morning. Maybe they think they are taking care of annual obligations. Maybe they want to see their children or grandchildren all dressed up for Easter Sunday or hear them sing in the choir. Maybe they are not sure what they believe, but they will show up and churches will be packed out this one day out of the year.
We live in an age where church has been turned into an entertainment center with lightshows, fog machines, and loud music. It is not enough to have church. It has become a show as some ministers and ministries compete for numbers. An all out effort is made to appeal to the young people of the world, so church has become as much of a social club in some instances as it is a church.
It is an age where, at least in the United States, people are not sure what they believe. They are not sure what the trust or whom they trust. They don’t know what’s real and what is merely a “good package” put together by a church public relations committee. They want to have faith in God, but because of the people who say they represent Him, there is a great deal of doubt. Many have become disillusioned like Thomas, one of Jesus’s own disciples.
The story of Doubting Thomas is told in John 20:24-27. Now Thomas, one of the Twelve (Jesus’s own disciples), was not with the disciples when Jesus came (after the resurrection). 25So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the LORD!”
But he said to them, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.”
26A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” 27Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.”
What is the answer to a faith crisis such as Thomas experienced? Simple. The real Jesus showed up and offered Thomas an experience he could not deny.
If Christians lived lives that were so real, so transparent, and so authentic that Jesus showed in our hands and our feet as we go into the world and minister his love to others; if people could see Jesus in us, there would be much less of a faith crisis in the world.
I just got back from a Morning Star Joshua and Caleb Conference (designed for those over the age of 50). There were reports of people being healed, coming out of wheelchairs, blind eyes opened, deaf ears unstopped, and even people raised from the dead in other countries. These testimonies were from people attending the conference, not from the speakers!
If we saw in this day and age such miraculous things, and if we experienced signs and wonders as are promised in the Bible, there wouldn’t be enough churches to hold the people who would want to see an authentic manifestation of the love of God toward His children.
On this resurrection week-end, may our faith be stirred by our hope in Christ, and our doubts be buried in an empty tomb.
Reach longtime Enterprise columnist Judith Victoria Hensley at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Facebook. Check out her blog: One Step Beyond the Door.