Throughout these various resurrection appearances there is an interesting phenomenon at work which I believe conforms to a valid spiritual principal. It might seem logical that the more spiritually advanced a person is, the more they would be able to meet Jesus in a fully enfleshed resurrection appearance -- "like matching like," so to speak. But in fact things seems to work the opposite way. Jesus is present in physical density only insofar as is necessary to match the density of doubt that is blocking the view. Mary Magdalene needs only to see him in order to be reassured, and so Jesus appears to her as a vision. Thomas's doubt is deeply visceral, so he receives a fully visceral resurrection appearance. And some who are particularly advanced on the path, such as John, the beloved disciple, never seem to require a private visitation at all; they already grasp the whole picture in their inner insight. Jesus is corporeally present only to the degree that people cannot yet see with the eye of the heart. As the eye of the heart opens, there is more and more freedom to release the physical traces and simply allow the naked immediacy of love to meet heart to heart.
The question that this passage asks me is: In what ways does Jesus appear to me in order to match the places where my heart is called to growth from its unbelief?
As I try to answer the question, I can say for certain that Jesus appears to me in the children at my ministry. Their simplicity, their ability to let the previous moment go as quickly as it comes, their less-hesitant acceptance of the good in whatever is in front of them, and their love of play are all places where my heart is called to see with more loving eyes.
And today, I found the perfect example of people playing that I must share. This takes me back to my days of loving Broadway, and it is just plain fun! The show Hamilton should be sweeping the Tony's on Sunday night, and if you're not one for rap music, skip past the first three minutes. The clip comes from The Late, Late With James Corden, and any fan of Broadway (or fun, in general) should enjoy!
How does Jesus appear to you in ways that call you to grow past your unbelief?
Let us walk in the holy presence.