← Back to Worship Resources

Doubting Thomas

Description

Here are some worship resources inspired by Jesus’ appearance to Thomas and the other disciples following the resurrection.

Prayers

A Door to Discovery

How strangely comforting, Lord,
That so many of your servants
Have doubted you.

So,
If I cannot always see the sense
Of your Word;
If I do not always feel confident
About my faith;
If I wonder where your love is
In the face of pain and death;
I am not the first.

A great company of saints and martyrs
Has felt this way before me.
Now, in your presence,
They see face to face
And know as they are known.

Teach me, like them,
Not so much to fear doubt
As to see it
As a sign of the mystery of life
And a door to discovery.

~ from More than Words, copyright Saint Andrew Press 2008. Posted on the Church of Scotland’s Starters for Sunday website. http://churchofscotland.org.uk/

Congregational Prayer for Doubters

You call us to be people of faith,
yet we are often people with doubts.
We doubt that love can grow again in relationships
where anger and bitterness reign supreme.
You know the strength of love and the power of prayer:
help us to be faithful lovers.
We doubt that peace can come in the Middle East, in Syria, in Palestine;
where hatred and racism reign supreme.
You know that peace is growing there:
help us to be faithful peacemakers.
We doubt that the hungry can be fed in Africa,
where despair and hopelessness reign supreme.
You know that there is enough food in the world;
help us to be generous and faithful.
You specialize in impossibilities;
you walked on water,
you heal the nations
you forgive sins
you set the captive free,
you set us free from our captivities.

This morning we pray for people here who are filled with doubts,
who wonder whether you exist and whether you are listening to our prayers,
who wonder what this whole community is about.
We pray for people who doubt the purpose of life,
who wonder whether to end it all,
who face feelings of meaningless and despair.
Even when we have that sinking feeling,
give us the wisdom to turn to you.
Lord we want to believe, help our unbelief!
Give us faith, small as a mustard seed,
so that we can be your faithful people,
believing in your power to save,
believing in your power to reign supreme,
believing that we can share this good news
with everyone we meet.
We ask all this in Jesus’ name.

Amen.

~ written by Carol Penner, and posted on her Leading in Worship blog.
http://carolpenner.typepad.com/

Opening Prayer

Lord Jesus Christ, the light of your love shines on,
illuminating the places where you are present.
As the bewildered disciples pondered the stories of your appearance,
you penetrated the darkness of their fear and doubt with your word of peace.
You showed them the appalling marks of evil pierced on your hands and feet.
You opened their minds to understand why you had to die to defeat such evil and death.
Increase our understanding, we pray,
and open our minds and hearts to receive you, Lord.
Speak your word of peace to us and let your love shine on any dark areas in our lives.
May this worship which we offer in your name be a worthy response to your love and your sacrifice for us.

Amen.

~ written by Moira Laidlaw, and posted on the Liturgies Online blog.
http://www.liturgiesonline.com.au/

Prayer of Confession

Wondrous God, we confess that at times our doubts and fears override our hope and faith. Forgive us when we lose sight of the joy of Your love and instead fall into despair and gloom. Lift up our spirits, Lord, and help us to remember the promise of new life here and now, not just the hope of resurrection for the future. We give thanks for Your Son, Jesus the Christ, who continues to offer us new life, who continues to turn us around and upside down, who continues to break down the walls of death in our own life. Forgive us, restore us and renew us. In the name of our risen Savior, Jesus the Christ, we pray.

Amen.

~ written by Rev. Mindi, and posted on her Rev-o-lution blog.
http://rev-o-lution.org/

Spoken Resources

Punctuation

god is in the single dot. the full stop.
even eternity must have paused
to catch her breath in bethlehem,
on calvary, in that hospital room with me.

god is in the comma, and god is
like outstretched hands, connecting
or a long pause, gasping.

god is in the exclamation's shout!
the anger, the fervor, the wonder!

god could be in the colon:
the answer.

god is in the semi-colon; god
joins what would remain apart.

is god in the question mark?
is the curve and unoffensive dot
the mark of the fall of
a former zealot?
is it my downfall, my lack of faith?
or is it the curve of god's embrace?

~ written by Hillary Beasley, a high school English teacher

Witnesses

How do we find the faith to believe the story of Easter, Jesus?
How do we grasp its truth?
We can only accept it;
refusing to reduce it to scientific debate
or historical literalism
kneeling with humility and awe beside the blood-stained cross
and the empty grave;
For then, we are your witnesses.
How do we understand the mystery of your death and life, Jesus?
How do we explain it?
We can only live it;
allowing it to permeate every grain
of this sand that forms us,
every thought, every priority, every act and every interaction;
For then we are your witnesses,
and you deserve nothing less from us.

Amen.

~ Copyright © John van de Laar, on his excellent Sacredise website. http://sacredise.com/

Call to Worship (or Benediction)

Leader: Where is this Jesus, the one you call Messiah?
People: Christ is Risen! Christ is here among us!
Leader: I do not see him. I don’t believe you.
People (louder): Christ is Risen! Christ is here among us!
Leader: Let me see his body, his hands and his feet.
People: We are Christ’s body; We are Christ’s feet.
Leader: You see the suffering in the world? Where is Jesus now?
People: We are going into the world to be the body of Christ.
Leader: Let us go together, let us partner with others.
People: For we are the body of Christ: let us share the Good News!

~ Rev. Mindi on her blog, Rev-o-lution.
http://rev-o-lution.org/

Benediction

"Peace be with you," Jesus says to us in this room.
"As the Father sent me, so I send you."
No doubt or fear can lock God out of our lives.
Remember that as you leave this place,
sent forward to live by faith.
And may these words echo through your mind, as well:
"Blessed are those who have not seen
and yet have come to believe
."
And all God’s people said, "Amen!"

~ written by Peter L. Haynes. Posted on the website of the Long Green Valley Church of the Brethren.
http://rockhay.tripod.com/

Songs

Traditional Hymn: My Faith has found a Resting Place

Worship Together #187

My faith has found a resting place,
Not in device nor creed;
I trust the Ever-living One,
His wounds for me shall plead.

Refrain:
I need no other argument,
I need no other plea,
It is enough that Jesus died,
And that He died for me.

Enough for me that Jesus saves,
This ends my fear and doubt;
A sinful soul I come to Him,
He’ll never cast me out. [Refrain]

My heart is leaning on the Word,
The written Word of God,
Salvation by my Savior’s name,
Salvation through His blood. [Refrain]

My great Physician heals the sick,
The lost He came to save;
For me His precious blood He shed,
For me His life He gave. [Refrain]

~ E.E. Hewitt (1851-1920).

Tune suggestions:
LANDAS

Listen to it here: http://www.hymnary.org/tune/landas_gretry

Contemporary Hymn: My Lord, My God, the Living One!

My Lord, my God, the Living One!
The Father’s power has raised his Son,
bestowed on him the title “Lord”
and bidden followers spread the Word.

My Lord, my God, the Living One!
Our troubling doubts are overcome;
with Thomas now Christ’s wounds we see,
undoubted proofs of victory.

My Lord, my God, the Living One!
What Easter wonders have been done.
Like Thomas we rejoice to know
that death is a defeated foe.

My Lord, my God, the Living One!
His death, his life, we make our own.
We die to past mistakes and wrongs;
we rise with Christ to sing new songs.

My Lord, my God, the Living One!
The Lamb triumphant on the throne
with resurrection flag unfurled
extends God’s pardon to the world.

~ copyright © David Mowbray/admin The Jubilate Group (Hope Publishing in North America). Posted on The Jubilate Group website. If you use this song in worship, be sure to report it on your CCLI license.

Tune suggestions:
GERMANY, aka FULDA (“Where cross the crowded ways of life”)

Listen to it here: http://www.hymnary.org/tune/germany_beethoven_gardiner

Full arrangement with descant available here: http://www.jubilate.co.uk/music_lyrics/music/fulda_arr_and_descant

O WALY, WALY (“Tho’ I may speak with bravest fire”)

Listen to it here: http://www.hymnary.org/tune/o_waly_waly

Contemporary Song: Believe

You are my light
You are my strength
You are my rock on You I stand
I lift my voice
I raise my hands
I lift my soul with all I am
In Christ forever I stand

I will believe
You are strong enough
In my weakness God be lifted up
And I will sing
Lift Your praises high
Lord be magnified
You make all things new
I will believe

So hear this song receive our praise
You are our strength for all our days
We lift You up our voices high
In every storm let God arise
In Christ forever I stand

Oh Your love
Your love will never fail
Your love it knows no end
Your love will never fail
Oh Your love
Stronger than my shame
Greater than my pain
Your love will never fail

~ Darlene Zschech, Reuben Morgan. Copyright © 2009 Hillsong Publishing (APRA) (admin. in North American at EMICMGPublishing.com. CCLI Song 5637511. If you use this song in worship, be sure to report it on your CCLI license.

Listen to it here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kbIXoPblF8Q

Contemporary Song: Joyful (The One Who Saves)

Joyful joyful we adore You
God of glory Lord of love
Hearts unfold like flow'rs before You
Opening to the sun above

Melt the clouds of sin and sadness
Drive the dark of doubt away
Giver of eternal gladness fill us
With the light of day

You are the One who saves
You are the One who saves
You are the One whose hands lift us from the grave
You are the Light of life the everlasting day
You are the One who takes all our sins away

You are giving and forgiving
Ever blessing ever blessed
Fountain of the joy of living
Ocean depths of happy rest

Jesus You are my rescue
Jesus You are my rescue
I give You ev'rything I am

~ Brenton Brown, Jason Ingram. Copyright © 2010 Thankyou Music (admin. by EMI Christian Music Publishing). CCLI Song 5895580. If you use this song in worship, be sure to report it on your CCLI license.

Listen to it here: http://www.worshiptogether.com/songs/songdetail.aspx?iid=1826156

Contemporary Song: The Greatness of Our God

Give me eyes to see more of who You are
May what I behold still my anxious heart
Take what I have known and break it all apart
You my God are greater still

And no sky contains
No doubt restrains all You are
The greatness of our God
I spend my life to know
And I'm far from close to all You are
The greatness of our God

Give me grace to see beyond this moment here
To believe that there is nothing left to fear
And that You alone are high above it all
You my God are greater still

And there is nothing that could ever separate us
There is nothing that could ever separate us
From Your love
No life no death of this I am convinced
That You my God are greater still

And no words could say
Or song convey all You are
The greatness of our God
I spend my life to know
And I'm far from close to all You are
The greatness of our God

And no sky contains
No doubt restrains all You are
The greatness of our God
I spend my life to know
And I'm far from close to all You are
The greatness of our God
All You are the greatness of our God

~ Jason Ingram, Reuben Morgan, Stuart Garrard. Copyright © 2010 Hillsong Music Publishing (Admin by EMI Christian Music Publishing). CCLI Song #5660739. If you use this song in worship, be sure to report it on your CCLI license.

Listen to it here: http://www.worshiptogether.com/songs/songdetail.aspx?iid=1808584

Images

image06

~ The Incredulity of Saint Thomas, Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio (1571-1610)

Notes

This worship resource was created/compiled by Christine Longhurst. You are welcome to use it free of charge, and where appropriate, please note the source. If you are printing any of the resources for distribution, please print the source as well. The content of the worship resource does not necessarily represent the views of the Canadian Conference of Mennonite Brethren Churches, which oversees the Centre for Mennonite Brethren Studies. For more worship resources by Christine Longhurst, see http://www.re-worship.blogspot.ca or http://www.faithmatters.ca.

← Back to Worship Resources