Read Luke 2:21-49

from Rev. Kenneth Hardway, First Christian Church, Wheeling and Assoc. Regional Minister for Youth and Young Adults

Wow! We have a lesson today that spans Jesus’ entire childhood experience! What is it that we notice here? Jesus is raised in a faithful, modest family—faithful because they observed the Levitical purification laws after childbirth, and modest because the offering of two turtle doves or pigeons was a provision to the poor who could not afford the sacrifice of a lamb. Despite their modest income and social status, the Holy family made the annual trek to Jerusalem for the Passover.

What is it that we notice about Jesus? From his birth he has been blessed by the sages. A precocious young man, he dialogs in a masterful fashion with the priests and temple elites. Was Jesus a troublesome child? At least we know Jesus got scolded once by his momma for worrying his parents half-to-death (Jesus and I have that in common). While not canonical, there are ancient stories from those presuming to be followers of Jesus who tell all kinds of wild antics of Jesus’s youth. I always find joy in thinking of Jesus in that way.

Another thing to notice about Jesus’ childhood retelling… it starts and ends in the house of the LORD.

Let us not neglect to mark our lives in the same ways…faithfulness, modesty, surrounded by sages, and found attentive in the house of God.

Raise us up, O God, as your family, and direct us in the way that we should go.