Minefield | UMC YoungPeople
Connecting young people and their adult leaders to God, the church, and the world
April 2019


By Jeremy Steele

Doubts are not something that disqualify you from being a Christian, in fact, one of the disciples had serious doubts and needed help resolving them in community. This fun activity will help students think through and process what it means to doubt and how they can deal with doubting.

Items needed: Blindfold, chairs and other objects to set up a small obstacle course


Set up a small obstacle course made up of chairs and any other objects that you think would be appropriate for your “minefield”.

Play the game:

Say something like:
Today we are going to play a little game. I need one person who will volunteer to wear this blindfold and be led through a small obstacle course by the rest of the group. (Choose a volunteer, have them stand at the start of the obstacle course and put on the blindfold.) Now explain that the other students are going to guide them through the course using only their voices, not touching allowed, however, some of them may choose to give incorrect instructions while others give the correct ones. Once the volunteer has made it through, remove the blindfold and ask something like: What was helpful communication and what wasn’t? Was it easy to trust your guides? How did you choose what voices to listen to? What were some of your feelings – fear, safety, etc?

Discuss with the group:

  • What did this activity have to do with this scripture about Thomas (John 20:19-31)?
  • Have you ever had a time when you were filled with doubt because of the circumstances or voices surrounding you?
  • How do you deal with that type of situation?
  • How do continue to believe in and trust Jesus even when you are surrounded by fear, anxiety and doubts.

Say something like:
Thomas had a hard time trusting that Jesus was still alive, because he was listening to his fear and doubt and allowing that noise to cloud and cover up the things that he already knew about Jesus. It wasn’t until Jesus showed up in person that Thomas was able to really believe and trust that what the other disciples had told him was true. The truth is, we all have doubts at some point in our lives, and we, unlike Thomas, have never met Jesus in the flesh. However, when the noises of fear and doubt start to drown out what we really know to be true about Jesus, we need to seek an encounter with Him in order to be able to believe all the things that He is.

Reflection time:
Allow each student some time in quiet reflection and prayer to consider the doubts that frequently hold them back from full belief in Jesus, and encourage them to spend some time letting go of those doubts and trading them in for the truths of Jesus. This might be a good place for journals or paper and writing utensils for students who may like to write or draw out their prayers.

When he's not playing with his four children with his wonderful wife, Jeremy is the associate pastor at Los Altos UMC in Los Altos, CA. Jeremy has spent over twenty years working in youth and children's ministry and continues to train children and youth workers as well as writing and speaking extensively in that field. His most recent book is the "All the Best Questions." You can find a list of all his books, articles, and resources for churches at JeremyWords.com.