For children: Has anyone ever told you something that you didn’t believe? Tell about that time. Well Thomas didn’t believe his friends that they had seen Jesus. But then Jesus appeared to Thomas. Jesus knew that Thomas needed to see him to help him know that Jesus was really alive. We don’t see Jesus like Thomas did but we do see God in many different ways in our lives that let’s us know that God is with us always. How do you see God in your life? Just like Jesus came to Thomas, Jesus promises to come to us in our lives and be with us always-even when we are not sure if Jesus is really there-he is!
For youth/adults: Thomas often gets a bad rap for his “doubting.” Thomas is actually a very faithful disciple in the rest of the gospel stories where he is present. The issue here is not that Thomas demands a little proof, but that Jesus comes to us and stands among us no matter what-even when we have a hard time understanding. Tell about a time when you knew that Jesus was present in your life. Tell about a time when you wondered or doubted that Jesus was present. Doubt is not the opposite of faith-doubt helps us to ask the questions that we are wrestling with to go deeper in our relationship with God. Thomas is the only one in John’s gospel to proclaim Jesus “Lord and God.” Out of Thomas’ doubt sprang a declaration of deep faith and recognition of who Jesus is. When was a time that you wrestled with some questions about God or to God that helped you deepen your faith?
April 2nd is officially PB and J day-so a church in Denver, CO USA, decided to honor that day by starting a service project for April 7th called “PB and J for Hunger”. Make as many PB and J sandwiches as you want/can and go to a location where those without a home may be and hand them out. Food scarcity and access to food is a large issue for many in our communities. You can also donate loaves of bread/peanut butter and jelly to a local food pantry for distribution.
Dear Jesus, you come and stand among us even when we doubt. You welcome our questions and promise to be with us always and give us peace. Let us be open to share our questions and struggles with other people who may be questioning as well. We pray to share your unending peace and love with all people, amen.