Sunday, April 3, 2016

peace be with you

     A 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!” Then 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.”
     Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God!” (John 20:26-28)


Me: Lord, is my anxiety, at its core, really unbelief?
Jesus: What do you think?
Me: I'm afraid it is, but unbelief sounds like such an ugly, harsh word.
Jesus: Unbelief has many faces.  Unfortunately, anxiety is one of the faces you are most familiar with.
Me: Well, that's really humbling.  Because not a day goes by, and in some instances not a minute goes by, when I  am not battling anxiety.
Jesus: Then stop doubting and believe.
Me: Is it really that easy?
Jesus: I never said it was easy, but it is that simple.  Most things in the spiritual life are.
Me: How do I do that?
Jesus: Look at what I did with Thomas, that will give you a hint.  Jim, my deepest wish for you is my deepest wish for all of my sons and daughters--my peace.  Which is not just a feeling, but the state of being whole and free.  And you become whole and free by truly believing how deeply and passionately (and freely) you are loved.
Me: I long to know that love and that peace more deeply, in a way that completely transforms everything about me.
Jesus: Then put your finger here, touch my wounds.  Reach out your hand and put it into my side.  Stop doubting and believe.  Stop doubting your value and your worth.  Stop thinking that you must earn my love and affection.  Stop trying so hard to prove to yourself and your world that you are worth loving.  Stop doubting my love for you, instead touch my wounds and know that it's true.  I love you.  Believe it.  Believe it with all your heart.  Peace be with you!
Me: My Lord and my God!

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