Everyone these days has family and friends who have fallen away from their faith and a serious relationship with God. This reality is, and ought to be, concerning. For believers, we have experienced how much our relationship with God has helped us and we want others to have that freedom in Christ too. Perhaps sometimes, in our zeal to tell others about God, we push too hard and apply pressure that, in the end, actually stalls the process of conversion. Pope Francis in his homily for Divine Mercy Sunday had a great insight into this while reflecting on the doubt of St. Thomas:
Thomas doesn’t trust what the other Apostles tell him … He wants to see .. and what is Jesus’ reaction? Patience: Jesus doesn’t abandon stubborn-headed Thomas to his disbelief. He gives him a week’s time. He doesn’t close the door but waits. And Thomas recognizes his own poverty, his little faith. ‘My Lord and my God!’: with this simple yet faith-filled supplication, he responds to Jesus’ patience. He lets himself be enveloped by divine mercy, sees it in front of him, in Christ’s wounds on his hands and feet … and he rediscovers his trust. He is a new man: no longer an unbeliever, but a believer.