Prepare: Bring something REALLY sticky, like a piece of duct tape or packaging tape (or you could go messy if you want, like honey). You want it to be something that will stick to your hand as you try to get rid of it. Styrofoam peanuts that have a good static charge going would work, too. The main thing is that you need to be able to get it off your hand when you want to, but it needs to stick up to that point.
Faith+Open: Greet the children with, “Alleluia! Christ is risen!” If they do not know the response, teach them to say, “Christ is risen indeed! Alleluia!”
Faith+Share: Hello! Today is we hear this amazing story about Jesus appearing to his disciples. They were afraid after Jesus was arrested and killed, so they were hiding in a locked room. Do you think that stopped Jesus from finding them? No, he appeared with them and said, “Peace be with you.” That by itself is pretty amazing. And then there is the whole story about Thomas and Jesus. Thomas wasn’t there the first time, and didn’t believe Jesus came, so then . . . wait, that’s not the part of the story that I wanted to tell you about. Man, I really got sidetracked! Do you forgive me? (Wait for an answer)
Oh, good, because that was what I wanted to talk about! Jesus said something else to the disciples when he first came to them, he said, “If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them, if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.” Think about it this way, if you forgive a person for something then the sin goes away, but if you don’t forgive the sin sticks around. It’s kind of like this tape (or whatever sticky thing you brought). If I don’t do something about this it will just stick to my hand and get it my way, and stick to other things. It might even switch hands on me and it just won’t go away. Here’s the crazy thing. This tape on my hand isn’t really my sin, it’s the sin that I don’t want to forgive, it’s someone else’s sin, but it’s stuck on me!
To get this tape off my hands I have to pay attention to it and make sure that I don’t grab a stick part and fold it up and get rid of it (Do this while you talk, or wipe off the honey, or . . . ) Part of forgiving someone is getting their sin out of your life and out of your way. If you let that sin stick around it just keeps getting in a way. Sometimes we call this holding a grudge, and it usually makes people grumpy and sad. When we hold grudges we spend a lot of time and effort staying mad at someone. When we forgive and let go of any grudges we can be happier and spend more time loving and caring for people and less time being grumpy.
Faith+Prayer: Loving Jesus, help us to forgive people when they do things that hurt us or make us mad. Help us to learn to forgive like you forgive us. Amen
Faith+Blessing: Say, “Alleluia! Christ is risen!” – Let then respond, “Christ is Risen indeed! Alleluia!”
Permission to use for nonprofit. When printing give credit to Faith Formation Journeys. Intellectual property rights apply.