May 24: Seeing Jesus — Family faith formation at home


Invite various persons to bring a designated item and use this liturgy to begin your time of learning together. 

One:    Come, let us gather around and see how the Spirit will nurture our faith today.

All:      Who is with us?
One:    Christ, the light of the world.
(Place a candle on a table in your gathering place and light it.)

All:      Who is with us?
One:   The Love of God, who came to meet us in the world.
(Place a cross on a table in your gathering place.)

All:      Who is with us?
One:    The Wisdom of God, who speaks through the Scriptures.
(Place an open Bible on a table in your gathering place.)

All:      Who is with us?
One:    The Grace of God, who proclaims we are children of God.
(Place a symbol of baptism – a bowl of water, a seashell – on a table in your gathering space.)

All:      Who is with us?
One:    Our risen Lord, who meets us at the table.
(Place a symbol of communion – a plate and cup, a loaf of bread, grapes – on a table in your gathering space.)

One:    We are here, Holy Spirit, ready for your leading.


God sightings and prayer offerings 

Invite each person to share where they saw or experienced God this week. Invite each person to share something — a person, community, experience, event, etc. – for which they want to offer prayer. 

Good and gracious God, we thank you for all the ways you were and are present in our lives and in the world. [Invite each person to say aloud the sighting they named earlier.] We bring our prayers to you, prayers for… [invite each person to say aloud the prayer need they named earlier]. In Christ’s name we pray, Amen.


Connecting with Scripture: John 14:1-14

Today’s Scripture may be difficult for young children to understand. Below you will find a child-friendly telling of the story. Consider reading the text from the NRSV or the CEB and follow it with the story rather than a second reading this week.


A young child’s story version:

After talking to his disciples about leaving and returning to his Father, Jesus tells them it’s time for him to go. His work on earth is almost finished. When he returns to God he will no longer be on the earth, but that does not mean he is leaving us alone. Jesus will still be with us and his work will continue, only now his work is to be done by the disciples empowered by the Holy Spirit. It now falls to the disciples’ responsibility to do the ministries that Jesus did: heal the sick, welcome the stranger, love the outcast. When they do they will glorify God and make Jesus known in all the world. This is the ministry that Jesus gives to his disciples to keep working on until he comes back. Jesus told them what they needed to do and gave them what they needed to do it. Then he prayed for them and asked God to be with them always in their work. It might seem like Jesus is invisible but he is not. We can see Jesus is still working in the world through our ministries.


Connecting through story

Watch this video of the reading of “The Invisible Boy” by Trudy Ludwig and illustrated by Patrice Barton.

  • Why did Brian feel invisible?
  • How did he begin to feel seen?
  • In what ways have you sometimes felt invisible? What helped you feel seen?



Connecting with our lives

Engage in dialogue:

  • Why would it seem as if Jesus was invisible?
  • How does Jesus plan to make sure people continue to see him even though he will return to his Father?
  • What does it mean to “glorify God”?
  • Why do you think Jesus prayed for his disciples?
  • How does continuing the work of Jesus after he is gone help glorify God and make Jesus seen in the world even today?
  • How have you helped Jesus “be seen,” rather than be invisible?
  • What are some ways you can glorify God and make Jesus seen?


Teaching points that can be incorporated into your discussion:

  • When Jesus returns to his Father in heaven he leaves a big responsibility with his disciples. They are to continue his ministry.
  • We’ve seen from previous passages that the disciples don’t have to do it alone; the Holy Spirit will help them.
  • The original disciples and apostles spread the good news of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection down through the ages all the way to us. Now we have the responsibility to continue Jesus’ ministry.
  • When we do the work Jesus wants us to do, we glorify God and people can see Jesus.
  • Everyone who is a believer and follower of Jesus has a ministry – children, youth and adults. Ministry is not just for pastors and educators.
  • Our ministries make Jesus’ presence and love real and visible for everyone to see.



Have each person write or draw a prayer for those who make Jesus seen in the world and glorify God.



Close your time together using the prayers you have written or drawn.


REBECCA DAVIS is the associate professor of Christian education at Union Presbyterian Seminary in Charlotte, North Carolina. A teaching elder and certified educator, she served congregations for over 20 years before moving into academic teaching. In addition to teaching and mentoring students, her passion is child advocacy and ministry.