Happy 2024! Enjoy Blessings and Love with our God of Love every day… as we travel on!

The beginning of a brand new year, a time span where life will birth countless brand new and exciting things from the minds and actions of so many people, seems a perfect time to examine Jesus as a brand new being in our world. Jesus’ arrival rattled certain people from the start. Returning to Luke, after His birth in Bethlehem, His Mother, Mary, and guardian, Joseph, took Jesus to Jerusalem for baptism. He was only 8 days old. Afterwards, they returned to Bethlehem.

In Matthew 2, we see that Joseph was told by the Lord’s angel to take Jesus out of Bethlehem when He was around 1 or 2 years old. You’ll remember King Herod wanted to kill Jesus after hearing the 3 Magi refer to the baby as the “king of the Jews.” They had seen His star in the east, traveled far to worship, pay tribute, and honor the child with gifts. This kid could pose a serious threat to the current order of life that benefited Herod greatly. The situation was serious, so Joseph took tiny Jesus and Mary to Egypt, as directed, and remained there until Herod died.  

In Luke 2, we see the family’s move to Nazareth where Jesus begins growing and becoming who He was born to be. He is living under the old Law his earthly parents would be subject to at this point. His time, and “training” necessary, to become our Savior within the New Covenant was in process. As the Word says:

“When Joseph and Mary had done everything required by the Law of the Lord, they returned to Galilee to their own town of Nazareth. And the child grew and He became strong; He was filled with Wisdom, and the Grace of God was upon Him.

Every year His parents went to Jerusalem for the Feast of the Passover. When He was twelve years old, they went up to the Feast, according to the custom. After the Feast was over, while His parents were returning home, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but they were unaware of it. Thinking He was in their company, they traveled for a day. Then they began looking for Him among relatives and friends. When they did not find Him, they went back to Jerusalem to look for Him. After 3 days they found Him in the Temple Courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. Everyone who heard Him was amazed at His understanding and His answers.” Luke 2:39-47

“When His parents saw Him, they were astonished. His Mother said to Him, ‘Son, why have you treated us like this? Your father and I have been anxiously searching for You.’ ‘Why were you searching for Me?’ He asked. ‘Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?’ But they did not understand what He was saying to them. Then He went down to Nazareth with them and was obedient to them. But His Mother treasured all these things in her heart. And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and favor with God and men.” Luke 2:48-52

Often, especially in our formative years, parents and family don’t understand those things within us we feel pulled toward. There is so much in these verses. Jesus is following His “North.” What He feels innately drawn to. By God as it turns out. For HIS purpose. His panicked parents know only their beloved is “not with them,” “not following the same path they are on toward home.” And, yet, just as she consciously treasured her son’s birth, though it pained her, Mary treasured this part of His evolution too. She knew God had plans for her boy and she had to trust that. 

We know that, once home, Jesus was taught carpentry so he could work in the family business. There’s something poetic in that he was trained as a creative… a “builder.” Consider that, at the core, Jesus’ family would be contributing to building the world around them. He was raised in the Law given by Moses and He kept that Law. He was perfect. I suspect that period of engaging with the customs and beliefs of His Jewish heritage was necessary for his future role as King. How could He ever relate to or lead them without first hand knowledge of and participation in their ways. 

The Word is making big points here since very little beyond this is given to us. There are stories written in other sources of Him traveling to other places, training and learning to teach there, but this is not included in the Biblical canon.

Let’s sit with that for this week. Everything Jesus did and every event surrounding His life has meaning for us. Let us seek what it attempts to teach us as we move through Luke’s telling of Jesus’ life. He came to show us who we are to God. We each have purpose. Even as a child, Jesus moved toward His. So should we. May we nurture the new beings in our world, the children, as they move toward the things they are drawn to. 

We continue to lift up our brothers and sisters that are in the wars everywhere and all of the places affected. We pray that our nation will not be brought into these things, that all these places will find peace and be at rest as they rebuild.🙏

Blessings and Love to each of you. Have a wonderful New Year of ‘Growth’ in 2024 and in ‘Relationship with our Lord’ as we travel on. Love you So❤️🙏

Poppa B.