Avondale E-Worship
"I Doubt It"

John 20:19 - 31
Jesus Appears to the Disciples
19   When it was evening on that day, the first day of the week, and the doors of the house where the disciples had met were locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you.” 20   After he said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord. 21 Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you.” 22   When he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit.   23   If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.”

Jesus and Thomas
24   But Thomas (who was called the Twin[ a ]), one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. 25   So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord.” But he said to them, “Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands, and put my finger in the mark of the nails and my hand in his side, I will not believe.”
26   A week later his disciples were again in the house, and Thomas was with them. Although the doors were shut, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you.” 27   Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here and see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it in my side. Do not doubt but believe.” 28 Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!” 29 Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have come to believe.”

The Purpose of This Book
30 Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book. 31   But these are written so that you may come to believe[ b ] that Jesus is the Messiah,[ c ] the Son of God, and that through believing you may have life in his name.
Spiritual Reflection

1) Of all the things Jesus could have said at this time, why do you think the author records "Peace be with you?"

2) What does this peace lead them to?

3) Into what situation in your life is Jesus offering you his peace? What does it mean for you?

4) How does Jesus deal with Thomas' doubt? What does Thomas call Jesus which no one yet has called him in John's gospel?

5) When you have struggled with your own spiritual doubts, what was driving that doubt? 
A Moment for Children
Has someone ever told you a story and you thought to yourself, "I am not so sure about that! I will need to see it for myself to believe!"?
Last week, on Easter, we heard about Mary and several others visiting the tomb where Jesus' body was laid only to discover he was not there. But then what happened? Jesus came to Mary and told her that he was alive and well and would soon be in heaven with His Father! Well, the next day Jesus came to His friends, the disciples to share the same message however, Thomas was not there. Later when Thomas arrived home, everyone tried telling him the exciting news but Thomas thought the story sounded crazy! He thought, "I am not so sure about this! I will need to see Him for myself!"

Can you guess what happened next?
Jesus came to Thomas and asked him, "Do you believe now?" Thomas was amazed and immediately believed and Jesus said, "blessed are those who have not seen and still believe!" Wow!

When your parents say, "I love you" do you believe them?
Why do you believe them? After all, love is not something you can see!
We know and believe someone loves us because we can feel it! The same is for Jesus! We believe even though we have not seen because we can feel His love and presence in our lives. We learn about Him at church and by reading the Bible and we can even talk to Him in our prayers.

How can you help someone to feel your love today?
Mail a hug! Make a print of both hands on paper and cut them out. Measure your arm span and cut a piece of ribbon the exact length. Attach one hand to either end of the ribbon and mail your hug to a friend or family member!
Dear God, help us to believe even when we cannot see. Amen.
Easter Gifts
Given to the Glory of God!

You may view the 2020 Easter gifts in honor and memory of those we love and hold dear using the link below!

Thank you for these thoughtful and meaningful gifts to the ministries of the church!
Member Care Corner

"Show You Care - Task of the week"
Mail a hug! Make a print of both hands on paper and cut them out. Measure your arm span and cut a piece of ribbon the exact length. Attach one hand to either end of the ribbon and mail your hug to an Avondale member!
If you know of any member concerns or needs, please email Jim or call the church office and leave a message.

Online Directory Password: 1944A
Mission Corner

How is Avondale responding during this time of need?

The Bethlehem Center continues to use space at Avondale to host children whose parents are working in essential jobs, ensuring that the children can continue to learn while school is being conducted online. The program has had between 4 and 6 kids in recent weeks. Each week, Avondale's ABC team has put together non-perishable meal bags for each child's family for the weekend to ensure the children and their families are receiving nutritious meals. In this time when it is difficult for so many to feed themselves, Avondale is able to help those with whom we are engaged in mission year-round thanks to your faithful giving!  

Did you hear that our ABC friends were on WSOCTV News? Check it out using the link below!

A Moment of Grace!

When have you experienced a moment of grace? These are the moments that God lights you up, awakens your heart and touches you. These can be fleeting moments when you become intensely aware that Christ is working in the world, in you, through you and around you. These Moments of Grace can be a conversation, an act of sharing, an act of silence, a mere moment or a long story. Stewardship comes from the reality of awareness of our own moments of grace and highlights the responsibility to nurture our giving. We are called to share what is needed and to be conscious of the moments when we are called upon. 

Enjoy this Moment of Grace , as told by Richard Worf, where he explains Avondale’s role in helping the Bethlehem Center during this time of uncertainty.
Your Avondale Pledge

For those of you who contribute to your pledge through the offering plate on Sunday, there are many opportunities to fulfill your commitment including, mailing a check, PayPal or a one-time or reoccurring bank draft . Drafts can be setup or changed at anytime. Please contact Jacqueline for more information.
Self Care and Prayer
The Labyrinth is a sacred place set aside for you to reflect, pray, and worship God. The rhythm of walking empties the mind, relaxes the body and refreshes the spirit. 

The Labyrinth can be walked in four stages, allowing you to walk with your body and rest your mind.

Remember: Before walking the labyrinth take time in gratitude to be thankful for your life. Bless the people in your life. If there is a specific event or situation troubling you (like the coronavirus) bring it to mind and form a healing question if possible (such as why am I anxious about …).

Release: Walking into the labyrinth quiet the mind, let go of the chatter and release any tension. Open your heart to feel whatever it might feel. Become aware of your breathing making sure you are taking slow deep breaths. Relax and move at your own pace. 

Receive: While standing or sitting in the center, use this space as a place of reflection. Pause and stay as long as you like. Open yourself to God. Listen to God’s small, inner voice. Use this time to pray and be honest with God about the things you need to say. 

Return: While walking out of the labyrinth, take the same path you followed to go in. Walking out experience the sense of well-being, healing, energy, and peace.

Prayers You Might Choose to Offer

"I place myself in your presence O God."

"Thank you God for ______. I praise your name because you _______."

"Lord search me and know me for you have created me. Give me the strength to serve you and to _____."

While exiting, offer words of praise and thanksgiving!