January 14, 2009


'Now Thomas, one of the twelve, called the Twin, was not with them when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, "We have seen the Lord." But he said to them, "Unless I see in his hands the print of the nails, and place my finger in the mark of the nails, and place my hand in his side, I will not believe." Eight days later, his disciples were again in the house, and Thomas was with them. The doors were shut, but Jesus came and stood among them, and said, "Peace be with you." Then he said to Thomas, "Put your finger here, and see my hands; and put out your hand, and place it in my side; do not be faithless, but believing." Thomas answered him, "My Lord and my God!" Jesus said to him, "Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe."' - John 20:24-29 (RSV)

I've been thinking a lot about resurrection and what it means. My five year old son is excited for his resurrection body, because he'll be able to go through doors when they are shut. I feel excited about the scars.

I have long thought it is intensely interesting that the risen Christ bears "the print of the nails." If I'd planned it, I'd have healed those up. When I play God, I want the wounds to disappear and the flesh to be as if there were never nails or thorns or the rough wood of the cross. God begs to differ. We only know about one resurrected body, Jesus', and we know that Jesus enters new life carrying the deepest scars of the old.

So will I. If I think that God is going to remove the evidence of either the sin I've committed or the sin I've suffered, I've got another thing coming. The scars will all be there when creation is renewed. When I meet Jesus face to face, I'll see his. He already sees mine. There's no point in pretending.

That's what's so exciting. If I believe, and I do, that I have been born by baptism into the renewed creation starting now then I can claim my scars today. I can look at the scars I've caused and the ones I carry in my flesh. I don't have to show them off, but neither do I have to hide them.

Jesus says, "Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe," but I suspect that most of us are more like Thomas. I am. It's easier for me to believe when I see the scars, both my own and others'. Did Thomas really touch the wounds of Christ? Maybe. Or maybe it was enough that the offer was made. If I'm called to bear the image of God, like Christ, then I need to make the offer too.


  1. Great first blog post. Keep them coming.

  2. As I read your post, I remembered seeing the ugliness of scars, scars from a severe burn which I had seen on a young woman. Her face and arms were horribly scarred. I wondered why she had not had plastic surgery, especially on her face? Then a little toddler walked in behind her. She too had burn scars, on her little arms and top of her head. But otherwise, she moved without any problems and chattered away at her mother. I am reminded of the terrible pain we, as mothers, are willing to suffer if our actions could save our children. More than likely, this young woman had no problem when she looked in the mirror at her scars. Behind her she could hear the joyous laughter of her baby girl, and the scars really didn't matter.... So too, must our Lord look at His scars and smile because He knows He has saved our lives, for all eternity.Praise His holy name.