Thought For Today

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Thursday, July 21, 2011

Matthew 18 The heart of a child, a story about innocence. Conclusion

Even in our darkest hour, he is there.

Thomas felt such a peace that he could not find words to describe what he had experienced.  It did not matter though, he just knew what was inside him at that moment and he wanted to feel that way forever.  He looked around and saw many people crowding around the Galilean, but for that brief moment, this man and Thomas were alone together.  He seemed so much like his father, but there was something even so much greater about him than any man that he met before. 

The beauty of summer.
Thomas looked up again and there was another person pulling on the Galilean’s arm wanting him to see his friend standing nearby.  This other man he could see was blind.  His eyes were glazed over with what looked like a milky coating.  Next, the Galilean reached down and picked up what looked like dirt and he spit in it.  He then began to rub the dirt into his hand.  What happened after that puzzled Thomas, the Galilean took the pasty mud and began gently rubbing it against the man’s eyes.  He then asked for someone to give him some water.  He took a cup and poured the water over the man’s eyes.  He then asked the man if he could see.  The man responded by saying that the men around him looked like tree stumps.  The Galilean then rubbed more mud on the man’s eyes and again rinsed it off.  The man began to smile and say that he could now see everyone.  It was strange to Thomas because he saw the man jumping up and down, waving his arms all around and shouting, “I can see, I can see, I can SEE!”  Thomas looked over at the Galilean and he was smiling, but he was not looking at this man, but rather, he was looking straight at Thomas.  It made him feel such warmth and peace to have this stranger smiling at him.  “What was it that made him so different than any person that he had ever met before?”

Just then, Thomas looked over the Galilean’s shoulder and saw several men arguing with one another.  From what he could hear, they were trying to convince each other that they themselves were greater than the person standing before them.  Thomas heard one man say, “But I am the one that he loves!”  Yet another nearby said, “No one else got out of the boat, you were all too afraid!”  And yet another responded, “Yes, but did you have the faith to stay afloat?”  Each in turn said that they would sit beside the one called “Jesus” in the next kingdom.  This confused Thomas as to why they argued and he did not know whom this man Jesus was.

My good friend Gerry and my son, Will.
Thomas looked over to where the Galilean stood and he was gone.  He looked for him in the crowd, but he had disappeared.  Just then Thomas felt a hand on his shoulder, he looked up and it was the Galilean.  He then felt this strange peace and Thomas knew that all was well once more.  The Galilean then gently led him towards the men that were arguing.  Before entering into their discussion, the Galilean stopped and sat down on a large rock.  Thomas turned and saw the Galilean beckoning for him to come near him once more.  Thomas did as he was asked and he stood nearby the Galilean with this man putting his right hand on Thomas’ shoulder once more.  Then Thomas saw him looking over at the men arguing and he began to speak to them.

“I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.  Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.  And whoever welcomes a little child like this in my name welcomes me.  But if anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a large millstone hung around his neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea.”

The Galilean spoke for a few minutes more to his followers and to the crowd, all the while sitting next to Thomas.  When he was done speaking, he stopped and turned to Thomas to talk with him once more. 

Abby's flower cookie.
“Thomas, my name is Jesus.  I am so glad to meet you!  Do not fear what you do not know, for I will be with you always.  Though you are little, one day you will grow into a man who will do great things for me.  Now it is time that you were with your father and mother.”

Thomas turned and looked up and saw his father standing behind him, and beside his father was Thomas’ mother smiling and beaming with joy.  Thomas could only think now of his father and so he rushed as quickly as his legs could carry him into his father’s arms.  He buried his head deeply into his daddy’s shoulder as his father picked him up and swung him around and around.

“Father, I have missed you so much!”

“I too have missed you as well my son.”

Just then both Thomas’ parents looked over to the Galilean named Jesus.  Jesus was looking on, watching with a smile on his face.

Anne's gladiolas
“You are a good man John and you have a wonderful family.  I have taught you much and now you must teach your family those things that you have learned from me.  You must also be a beacon for your community.  They hunger for the light of salvation and you will hold my light for those who are lost.  John, many hunger to hear my words, but cannot.  You will be my voice, but you must first listen to the words of the counselor of whom I will soon send into the world.  He will guide you in all that you do and say.” 

Jesus now looks over to Thomas’ mother.

“Sarah, you are a good mother and wife.  Do not fear when John is away, I am with you always and you too will soon have the counselor that I will send into the world.  He will comfort you and give you peace when you are alone and afraid.  Turn to me and I will not abandon you, for I am the good shepherd and I will never leave my sheep.  Man will one day understand through me that ‘all’ are equal in the eyes of God and have equal worth, men and women alike.” 

Jesus now looks over to Thomas.

“Thomas, keep what is in your heart and do not lose the gentleness you have.  Look to others and see their needs, and ask me and I will show you what to do.”

The crowd seemed to close in on the place between Jesus and Thomas’ family so that they could not see him any longer.  And with that, Thomas’ father, John, turned and began to lead his happy family homeward.