Now His parents [i.e. Joseph and Mary] went to Jerusalem every year at the Feast of the Passover. And when He became twelve, they went up there according to the custom of the Feast; and as they were returning, after spending the full number of days, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem. But His parents were unaware of it, but supposed Him to be in the caravan, and went a day’s journey; and they began looking for Him among their relatives and acquaintances. When they did not find Him, they returned to Jerusalem looking for Him. Then, after three days they found Him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the teachers, both listening to them and asking them questions. And all who heard Him were amazed at His understanding and His answers. When they saw Him, they were astonished; and His mother said to Him, “Son, why have You treated us this way? Behold, Your father and I have been anxiously looking for You.” And He said to them, “Why is it that you were looking for Me? Did you not know that I had to be in My Father’s house?” But they did not understand the statement which He had made to them. And He went down with them and came to Nazareth, and He continued in subjection to them; and His mother treasured all these things in her heart. And Jesus kept increasing in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.
– Luke 2:41-52 NASB
Today’s passage picks up where yesterday’s left off. Jesus’ earthly ministry began at age thirty and ended with crucifixion at age thirty-three. The Gospels – because they consist primarily of eyewitness accounts – deal with these three years of His adult life. The only accounts of His life prior to this time are the stories of His conception and birth in Matthew and Luke, and the passages we’ve been reading the last few days from Luke.
You can see from the account above that while Jesus was obviously unusual, yet many facets of His earthly life were much like ours – especially when it came to family relationships. Notice that He matured by transitioning from dependence on earthly parents to dependence on a heavenly parent. Let us do likewise.
(Remember that prayer is more about listening than talking. Use the words below to start yourself, but then allow time to reflect more on the Scripture above before you say the “Amen.” During that time of quiet reflection, let God shape your thoughts and wait for a sense of peace to come. That’s your signal to say “Amen” and go forth to the day.)
Lord, we do not seek to be autonomous. We know that a human being is truly independent only when he is dependent on You. Show me how to trust You today…(this is where you remain quiet in order to let Him work in your thoughts)… Amen.