SANCTIFIED IN HIM
“…A week later his disciples were again in the house, and Thomas was with them. Although the doors were shut, Jesus came and stood among them and said, ‘Peace be with you.’ Then he said to Thomas, ‘Put your finger here and see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it in my side. Do not doubt but believe.’ Thomas answered him, ‘My Lord and my God!’ Jesus said to him, ‘Because you have seen me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have come to believe.’” (Jn 20: 26-29)
In this passage the risen Lord grants the “doubting” Thomas what the disciple has demanded, to physically touch His wounds, in order to believe. But Christ does not praise Thomas for his need to see and touch, of which He evidently disapproves. “Blessed are those,” the Lord remarks pointedly, “who have not seen and yet have come to believe.”
Thus Christ comes to His followers despite their imperfections; despite the “shut doors” – the doors we may have shut out of fear or doubt or something else. He comes to us not because we are perfect, but because we are His. All His disciples are “not of the world,” and “sanctified” or “consecrated,” (Jn 17: 16-19), as we all are in baptism. This means that we belong to Him. “Sanctus” or “holy” means “set apart for God,” or “belonging to God.” It means not that we are perfect (because only God is perfect), but that we are dedicated to Him, to His purpose.
Today I am gratefully reminded that our own imperfections are no obstacle to our Lord, who comes to us despite our “shut doors,” and “consecrates” us in His truth, not our own. “As you did send Me into the world,” He prays to the Father, “so I have sent them into the world. And for their sake I consecrate Myself, that they also may be consecrated in truth.” (Jn 17: 18-19)