Reflecting on Luke 24: 35-48
How did I never notice before that the first two gospel accounts that we hear in the Sunday liturgies in Easter Season—Divine Mercy Sunday and today’s Third Sunday of Easter―both give an account of Jesus asking the disciples to touch his wounds? Last week’s section from John recounted that Thomas needed to touch the wounds of Jesus in order to truly believe that he was risen from the dead. This week’s section from Luke tells of the appearance of Jesus to the Eleven, and how they, astonished, were invited by Jesus to touch his wounds.
“Touch me and see,” he said, “and then he showed them his hands and feet.” Reading them together now, I feel such tenderness toward Jesus, the Crucified One. Even now, risen and glorified, his humanness is apparent. Is it possible that Jesus the Risen One is still so in love with our human nature that he wants his dear friends to share in the awfulness of his experience? Is it possible that he, like every human who has ever lived, needs his loved ones to touch his pain and truly understand what he suffered?
Like everything about Jesus, he stands our understanding of suffering on its head. Maybe it’s NOT a holy thing to keep our wounds covered so we don’t disturb people. Maybe the holier thing is to say, when we are beside ourselves, “Help me. I’m hurting. I just broke my arm.” And, of course, the much less socially correct cry, “Help me. I’m hurting. Someone just broke my heart.”
And the other thing Jesus taught that day? Our friends trust us even more when we are willing to show them our wounds.
What wounds that you’ve kept hidden need to be brought into the light of day?
Kathy McGovern ©2018