Scripture: John 20:19-31
Key Scripture Verses: John 20:29b Jesus said “The people who have faith in me without seeing me are the ones who are truly blessed.” (Contemporary English Version)
“Faith makes us sure of what we hope for and gives us proof of what we cannot see.” Hebrews 11:1 CEV
· Jesus is alive.
· Even though we have not seen Jesus, we can believe in him.
· Jesus helps us to have faith.
1. Learn that after Jesus’ death his followers found it hard to believe that he was alive again (resurrected).
2. Understand that when the disciple Thomas wanted proof that Jesus was alive, Jesus, instead of becoming angry, told Thomas to have faith.
3. Know that Thomas recognized Jesus as Lord and God.
4. Children will create a picture where Jesus is there even when he cannot be seen.
Welcome and Introductions:
1. Welcome the children and introduce yourself. Wear your nametag. Make sure that everyone is in the right classroom! Children will either already have name tags on, or will get a nametag from their shepherd. Make sure that you know everyone’s name and greet the students individually. Remember you are interacting with a different group of students each week that may not know you.
2. Start the “lesson time” with prayer. Ask for volunteers, but plan on praying yourself. A short prayer asking God to help us to grow in faith and to be good disciples would be appropriate.
1. Read the Bible story (2-6 below) with expression. Remind them that although Thomas had doubts, Jesus, loving like God is, did not become angry or insulted. Instead, he said that the ones who are truly blessed are the ones who have faith without actually seeing. Jesus was not a ghost – he was real and could be touched.
2. Thomas was originally a fisherman. After meeting Jesus he became one of the original disciples – a devoted follower. After Jesus’ death and resurrection, Thomas became an apostle – sent by God to spread Jesus’ teaching of the word in many foreign lands.
3. Do you remember the Easter Resurrection lesson? Several of the disciples, men and women, were surprised to learn that Jesus’ body was not in the tomb. They were even more surprised when they met Jesus and saw that he was alive.
4. Thomas was not with the others when Jesus appeared to the disciples. So they told him, “We have seen the Lord!” But Thomas said, “First I must see the nail scars in his hand and touch them with my finger. I must put my hand where the spear went into his side. I won’t believe unless I do this!”
5. A week later the disciples were together again. This time Thomas was with them. Jesus came in when the doors were still locked and stood in the middle of the group. He greeted his disciples and said to Thomas, “Put your finger here and look at my hands! Put your hand into my side. Stop doubting and have faith!”
6. Thomas replied, “You are my Lord and my God!” Jesus said, “Thomas, do you have faith because you have seen me? The people who have faith in me without seeing me are the ones who are truly blessed!”
7. Discuss: Take a minute to talk to the children about the creation they are going to be doing in this workshop. Tell them that they will be creating a picture to remind us that just because we can’t see Jesus does not mean that he is not there.
Where is Jesus? When you look around you, where do you see Jesus? (in everything that is good, in kind words and acts, in good choices, in the people who are poor or hungry or frightened, Jesus is in our hearts to calm us when we are frightened ,in the sanctuary and in Faith Quest, etc.) Brainstorm more ideas about where they can find Jesus.
1. Create! Show kids a 9 X 12 sample of what they will be creating. Tell them that these people are Jesus’ disciples – maybe Mary or Martha, Thomas, John, Peter, James. Ask them “Can you see Jesus?” Lift the cellophane and show them that Jesus is there.
2. Steps: Pass out sheets of 6” X 9” drawing paper. Each child should print his or her name on the back. Sharing sets of markers, they should work on their creation, first drawing Jesus with a yellow highlighter and then the disciples in colors other than yellow (one color for each figure). When drawing is complete, pass out precut pieces of yellow cellophane to be glued along the top edge of their pictures. Ask the shepherd to help by running a bead of glue along the top edge.
3. Clean up! Involve everyone in cleaning up so that you will have time to share together in the closing. You may want to have a prearranged signal for clean up and tell them at beginning of art project what that will be - perhaps giving them a 5 minute warning and then the final clean up notice to allow those who need a bit more warning that they need to complete whatever they are working on.
5. Turn out lights and lock the classroom door when leaving.
Ask the shepherds to pass out Journals and pencils/markers. The children should spend a few minutes reflecting upon the morning's lesson – Do we have to see God to believe in him? Where can we find answers about God and what God wants us to do? (pray to God, asking parents and teachers) Why did Thomas have trouble believing? (he hadn’t seen Jesus) What did Jesus tell him? How did the disciples’ faith change their lives? (some became apostles, spreading the message of Jesus).
1. Encourage the children to think about believing, trusting and praying to God when we have doubts.
2. Tell them that their Pennies will be given to Habitat for Humanity to help people believe in God.
3. Say the Key Memory Verse together (see above). You may want to have this verse printed on a banner and hung in the room, write it on the white board in the room, or have it on slips of paper that each child can take home.
4. Pray! Ask the children if they have any prayer requests. Tell God that we have questions in our hearts. Ask Him to forgive us for not always trusting and to help us grow in faith. Thank God for sending Jesus to us to show us the way.
Teacher preparation in advance:
1. Read the scripture passage and attend the Faith Quest Leaders Workshop.
2. Practice reading the Bible story (above) with expression.
3. Prepare an opening prayer in case nobody volunteers to pray.
4. Check the art room to see what supplies exist. Experiment with what the children will be doing.
5. Prepare all the materials you will need for the creation process. Have the materials ready to go. There will be limited time for the creation process, so do everything you can to conserve time.
6. Decide how you want to close the lesson. Prepare a prayer or use one of the group suggestions.
Colored Markers (remove yellow)
Yellow cellophane cut to 6” x 9”
6” X 9” drawing paper
Sample, cellophane, paper and highlighters will be provided.