Visible Wounds

caravaggio-thomas-16031

26 A week later his disciples were again in the house, and Thomas was with them. Although the doors were shut, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you.” 27 Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here and see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it in my side. Do not doubt but believe.” 

The Gospel of John, chapter 20, is always assigned reading for the first Sunday after Easter (or the Second Sunday in Easter, whichever you prefer to call it).  There are many, many marvels in this small story (John 20:19-31) that one could spend all of Eastertide just on these verses!  Personally, I’ve been wondering this week why it is that Jesus has visible wounds when he appears in the house to the disciples.  Is it only as a mark of identification, to prove that this resurrection was no hoax?  Or is there a deeper meaning?

Either way, I think it is important to note that resurrection does not mean reversal or instant restoration to a particular time in the past…no matter how much we may yearn for that.  Rather, resurrection, it seems, includes the past scars of life.  The jagged brokenness does not go away, yet it is transformed.  This is God’s powerful promise…for our wounds, too.

God of resurrection, make us whole in our broken places.  Not perfect.  Not unblemished.  But whole.  Amen.

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