Note: It is recommended that the word document provided in the "related assets" below should be used when printing the Leader's Edition of the I AM series.
I AM Leader’s Edition with Instructional Notes
Title: I AM Session 10: I AM the Alpha and the Omega
Age: 8 to 12 years
Liturgical Time: Any
Doctrinal Content: Jesus Christ is the Beginning and the End.
Direct Aims: The I AM series aims to help young people understand their relationship to Christ and to others based on the I AM statements.
Indirect Aims: An additional aim is for young people to understand specific ways that they may emulate Christ.
Materials for the Lesson Plan:
I AM Participant Workbook
Orthodox Study Bible Bible
No Man Ever Spoke as This Man: The Great I AM’s of Jesus by Fr. Anthony Coniaris
How is Christ the starting point and point of destination for us all?
5 minutes: quickly review I Am’s so far.
Introduce Alpha and Omega with the verse below.
Revelations 1: 8
I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, says the Lord, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”
The Alpha and Omega
Do you know what the words alpha and omega mean? Alpha is the first letter of the Greek alphabet and Omega is the last letter, just like A and Z in our alphabet. Of course, Jesus isn’t saying that he is a letter in the alphabet. He is the beginning and the end of everything. He was there when the world was created and will be there when it ends.
20 minutes: Discuss Christ as being both the beginning and end of all life. Start with Creator and Consummator of All on page 113, then follow with the work book.
We read in Creator and Consummator of All that Jesus created everything and has complete control over the creation of anything new. As humans, we sometimes forget that nothing could exist without God and that everything that does exist was created by God when He decided to create it, not a minute sooner or later.
Christ’s role in the creation and beginning of all life is obvious: if the Will of God was not part of creation, everything would have been created by coincidence or accident. Our beautiful planet where plants need the carbon dioxide that we breathe out and we need the oxygen they give off; our amazing bodies that keep breathing and pumping blood without thinking; the beauty of a rainbow of light bouncing off of water droplets in the air, were all created by the power of God, not coincidence. What other clues show us how God is involved in the creation of everything?
If Jesus was there in the beginning, we believe that He will also be there in the end. Jesus is the end goal in our lives. In What is Your Omega? We are told that everyone has a goal that they are trying to reach, no matter how big or small. We are all on the path, with Christ waiting for us to join Him in heaven.
Read What is your Omega Read on page 116 (Start with paragraph 3 “In contrast….”) through the third paragraph on page 117, ending with “who is the Alpha, is also the Omega.”
Life is a Race
Life is like a race. There is a starting line and a finish line, and Christ is at both ends. He was there when each of us was created, and He gets us started on our way in life. He is waiting for each of us at the finish line in heaven. Along the way we might stumble, we might get tired, we might get thirsty, it might get dark, we might want to give up, but we know that if we just keep trying we will reach the finish line. And of course there is a prize at the end: life in heaven that never ends. Christ is waiting for us at the finish line, we can’t let Him down!
This lesson is a bit shorter in case more time is needed on a particular lesson. If you finish all material with time to spare, participants can go back through their lesson book and review their answers to questions. Have them prepare a short presentation about what they might tell their parents, friends, or members of their parish if asked what they learned. Putting together a parish presentation of the I Am lessons will not only solidify what they learned, but will also bring the parish family together and allow the youth to teach what they know!
Written by Natalie Kapeluck-Nixon and Kira Senadak
Office of Youth and Young Adult Ministry
Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the USA
Click on the title below to obtain each lesson currently available within the series.