Today's Life Journal readings are Jeremiah 3, Jeremiah 4, and John 11.
Scripture: John 11:16 (The Message)
"That's when Thomas, the one called the Twin, said to his companions, 'Come along, we might as well die with him.'"
Lazarus, brother to Mary and Martha, and friend of Jesus, has died. Christ has decided to use his death to glorify God and begins making plans to go back to Judea even though some of the people there were looking for an opportunity to kill him. It is then that Thomas makes his statement.
This week a dear friend of mine caused me to stop and think about something that I've never really given much thought to. I've been accused before of being a pessimist but I have always countered that by saying, "I'm not a pessimist. I'm a realist." I've thought that saying that would make a difference. Now I'm not so sure.
Thomas was, indeed, just stating the obvious. If they followed Christ back to Judea, and if he were to be killed, the reality was that more than likely the same fate awaited them. However, the pessimist in Thomas left little room for the power of God to work in his life. He could only see the bad that might happen instead of being open to the possibility that God might also do countless good through them. So it is, many times, in the church as well.
Sure, there are problems in the church, and situations that may be less than ideal, but if we allow those negative voices among us to overpower the positive, and if we allow the problems to become our focus, we just might miss out on the moment someone is called from death to life.
God of possibilities, remind me that in you lies all that is, was, and may be. Help me to not be a negative presence within your Church, and teach me that in all things, good and bad, you are with me. Amen.