Seeing and Touching
As a young child I can remember well the instructions of my mother anytime we walked into a store that had items that were fragile or could be easily damaged or broken. It was simple – “look but don’t touch.” And as an adult I have watched children being given this same instruction and I must admit that I too have repeated it as well. I also remember that as I got older the phrase, “you break it, you buy it,” was also added.
Our senses are one of our primary ways of learning and believing – what we experience through our senses helps us to grow and learn about the world around us. The child learns that the stove is hot but touching, even though we might say, don’t touch, before they experience the hotness of the stove. And where I grew up one was always warned not to put your tongue on a cold metal pole in the wintertime. Yet, some crazy kid would test this assumption or be dared by older children to try it out.
Thomas had heard that Jesus had risen – from the women, from all of the other apostles who were gathered in the upper room, and from the two who have returned from their experience on the road to Emmaus. Yet, he wanted to see and touch. I think in many ways we are no different. It is hard to believe when we only hear about faith, sometimes we have to see, touch, smell and taste to believe. When and how has your faith been enhanced through your senses?
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