Today's Gospel reading is in John 20. Jesus has appeared to the Disciples "that evening" after talking to Mary in the garden. We aren't told if the Disciples believed Mary when she told them she "had seen the Lord." We are told that Jesus enters a place where "the doors being shut where the disciples were for fear of the Jews." (John 20:19) His first words are "Peace be with you." I imagine, can you, the Disciples were not only surprised but a little scared! No wonder His first words are "peace!" They are excited and share with Thomas -- who questions, isn't sure, doubts.
We can also question and need to hear "PEACE be with you" especially as we are facing some of our 'giants.' The phone call we didn't want, the unexpected move, the child that is hurting (even if they are adults!), the needs we see around us (people hurting, hungry, or even our own hunger and fear as bills come due) can all cause us to wonder, question and/or doubt. So how do we feel God's presence with us? How do we hear Jesus telling us "peace be with you"?
One of the readings I did this week, to prepare, gave a few wonderful suggestions. I would like to share two with you -- first off be in God's Word. God IS still speaking (even speaking peace) especially as we go to God's Word! AND, second, be with God's "people" -- be in worship, study, prayer -- with other believers. Even if we don't share everything happening we can be encouraged by others. We can, like my friend Isaiah says, know God has us by the hand and IN God's hand.
So....... What do you believe? What do you help others believe? In this ever changing world how can we share our belief in the RISEN Christ? How do we let people know, even as they face their 'giants' God - Emmanuel - IS with us and with them?