Preaching prep: “Peace be with you.”

Preaching prep: I’m always inclined to want to defend poor Thomas. And yet …

He only wanted the experience the others already had, after all. And why not? Back when they were debating whether to risk going to Bethany, he’s the one who urged them on, saying, “Let us also go, that we may die with him,” and here he appears to be the only one brave enough to be somewhere other than the locked room.

And yet, this year more than ever, I find myself pondering that blessing of peace: “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you.”

And the collect: “Almighty and everlasting God, who in the Paschal mystery established the new covenant of reconciliation: Grant that all who have been reborn into the fellowship of Christ’s Body may show forth in their lives what they profess by their faith … ”

I wonder if we don’t skip too easily past the true meaning of peace and reconciliation, which feels so complicated, and settle on the lesson about faith in things unseen. Which feels easier – and which so often seems to lead church people into the temptation of feeling superior to everyone else who isn’t in church.