Catholics among us will discover that today’s gospel reading taken from John 20:19-31 ends with the following sentence: “Jesus performed many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the messiah, the son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name” (vv.30-31). This tells us the reason for the miracles and its documentation: “that you may believe.” In a strict sense, miracles are meant for unbelievers and not for believers.When Jesus performed miracles in the Bible, he did them so that people might believe in him and not as solutions to socio-economic challenges.
The same is with today’s miracles. When they occur, they are meant to awaken our belief in Jesus as our messiah and the Son of God, and not as a way of solving societal problems.Show me any progressive and peaceful society and I will show you a people that solved their problems themselves by realising that they are co-creators with God. But show me any poor society and I will show you a people who want God to come down from heaven and solve their problems for them or a people waiting on someone else to solve their problems for them. Of course, God cannot do that lest he will be making a caricature of his own creation.
Do we really realise the powers and abilities that God built in us human beings? Do we actually know the resources God put in our disposal for our own good, many of which are yet undiscovered and untapped?It has been proven that most human beings hardly make use of up to 5% of the brain’s capacity before death. And yet people are still asking for miracle! Do we call that greed or ignorance or what?
The early Christians (in today’s first reading: Acts 4: 32 35) whose footsteps we are following and some of whom even met with Jesus personally did not depend on miracles to solve their personal and societal problems. Rather they created the community they wanted by bringing together their individual talents and abilities. They did that by putting aside their egoistic tendencies and reviving their love for each other, especially for the less privileged. When you show mercy to one another you are being merciful to the society and to yourself.Happy Divine Mercy Sunday folks!