We all have our heroes, and they are generally—in our eyes at least—“super-human.” Few of our heroes are recovering failures, or dead-beats. We overlook their faults because we like our heroes to be complete and uncomplicated. In the history of the Church there are a few Thomas’ who would be more revered if they had not revealed so much of their humanity. I’m thinking of Thomas Cranmer (1489-1556), for example, who, in the face of death, denied the Protestant faith. He realized his error and later died as a martyr for the faith. Cranmer, very publically revealed the very human struggle between fear and faith.
Then there is the proverbial “Doubting Thomas,” known also by his Greek name Didymus, one of our Lord’s disciples. His name has become synonymous with faithlessness.
What is remarkable about Thomas’ story is how the Lord dealt with his weak faith. Thomas refused to believe the testimony of the disciples, rejected their fellowship, and forsook the assembly of the saints. Yet our Lord met him where he was at, gave him opportunity, and provided the evidence need for him to say “my Lord and my God.” Thomas then, rather than being a disappointment to succeeding generations, becomes an encouragement to those of us with weak faith. For His children, our Lord provides the necessary faith for us to be able to say from the heart, “my Lord and my God.”