Kid's lessons 1/21-1/27

Jesus Appeared to Thomas (John 20)

Dear families,

Toward the end of John 20, we find the disciples gathered, only a week after the discovery of the empty tomb. Word of His resurrection had already begun circulating, and Jesus even made Himself known to some followers. At this point in the story, we read of Thomas’ response when faced with the news of Jesus’s resurrected life.
What lessons can we learn from Thomas’ doubt? Why did Christ declare our faith was more blessed than our sight?
Doubt comes so naturally to us. We so often feel the need to see things for ourselves before choosing to move forward in trust. This is as true for us now as it was for Thomas. However, unlike the doubting disciple, we do not have the scar-bearing Christ standing physically in our midst. Yet, Jesus declared this reality to be our blessing and advantage.
Thomas' encounter with Jesus offers us a significant truth about the necessity of faith. Like this disciple, we weren’t physically present to witness the stone roll away or to see the Lord’s burial clothes folded neatly where His body once lay. We weren’t there, racing at breakneck speed to see the empty tomb with our own eyes. However, we can receive the greater blessing of faith that only comes with the absence of sight. How great will our joy be when our faith does become sight!
Just as Jesus' resurrected body was able to appear to His disciples even while they hid behind a locked door, so can He break down the barriers to our faith. He welcomes doubters to enter into His presence. Jesus stood among them despite their distress and fear. In fact, His initial greeting was one of gentleness and peace—not anger or apathy.
As you talk with your kids this week, help them understand that Christ offers us the same peace and compassion given to Thomas and the others. He likewise commissions us to proclaim the good news to the ends of the earth. Just as Thomas heard of the resurrection through word of mouth, people around us are also dependent upon our sharing of the gospel’s great news.

FAMILY TALKING POINTS
Family Discussion Starters:
• Why did Thomas eventually believe Jesus is alive?
• What do you believe to be true about God even though
you haven’t seen Him?
Family Activity:
Set up an obstacle course through the house and direct kids to navigate the course blindfolded. Attempt the course again but now have a family member guide kids by her voice. Discuss how faith is believing in something not seen. Tell kids that even though we have not seen Jesus, we are blessed when we believe in Him.

CHRIST CONNECTION
This is the big idea of how this week’s Bible story points to Jesus.
Babies & Toddlers: We have not seen Jesus, but if we believe in Him, we will be blessed.
Younger Preschool: Jesus is still alive today. We have not seen Jesus, but if we believe in Him, we will be blessed.
Older Preschool: Jesus is still alive today. We have not seen Jesus, but if we believe in Him, we will be blessed.
Kids: Jesus is still alive today. We have not seen Jesus, but if we believe in Him, we will be blessed. Jesus sends out believers to tell others about Him and gives us the Holy Spirit to help us.

CATECHISM QUESTION & ANSWER
Preschool: Catechism 62
Question: Can you repent and believe in Christ by your own power?
Answer: No. The Holy Spirit changes my heart.
1ST-5TH: Catechism 62
Question: Can you repent and believe in Christ by your own power?
Answer: No. I cannot repent and believe unless the Holy Spirit changes my heart.

MEMORY VERSE: John 15:4-5
"4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. 5 I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing."
For help memorizing- We suggest the song: “I Am the Vine- Slugs and Bugs"
https://youtu.be/gZxdSlEoEdE?si=cmI4a7qLZ-6IqpVQ

** Next week: Jesus Forgave Peter (John 21)

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