Here we see Jesus coming close to God in the temple. Remember, that to the Jewish people, the temple is the house of the Lord. Like we seek to draw near to God in prayer, so, too, did they seek to draw near by going to the House of God. We know that his earthly parents brought him there for Holy Days and festivals- times of celebration but also times of worship…and prayer. This practice of going to God set the stage for what Jesus would do next..prepare through study.
Of course we know that Jesus needed neither to draw closer to God nor prepare to pray, yet as a human, he demonstrates for us the obedience and preparation necessary for us to come closer to the God we serve. I wonder if as he came to the temple on those special occasions he actually felt more at home than in Joseph’s home in Nazareth. Did he struggle with whether to stay with his Father in the Temple or travel with his family back to his childhood home? Or, perhaps, was he so connected with God that he did not even notice his family had left…He was with God, what more did he need?
Jesus, drawn near, drawing nearer.
Jesus, full of wisdom, growing still in wisdom.
Jesus, connected more than any of us will be in this life, still seeking the deeper connection. Showing us the way.
What is the WAY to this nearness? What can we learn from Jesus’ own journey?
Drawing near to God involves practice and preparation. WE must pray for wisdom to be revealed, for understanding of God’s Word. At the same time, we learn to pray this very Word back to the author of all words, the Father of The Word-Jesus Christ.
As we draw near to God in prayer and study, the Word begins to dwell in us. God with us-Immanuel.
Like Jesus, we go to God. We study, we pray, and then we must go into the world…God with us, in us. Like Jesus, we are prepared for what lies ahead. Like Jesus, we can use God’s gift of wisdom and connection through scripture and Spirit, to stand up for Truth against the trials of this world.
Father, thank you for the gift of prayer, the blessing of connection through your Holy Spirit and your word. Continue to draw us close, to bind us to you. May we feel at home with you and may your Holy Spirit rest, at home, in us. Give us wisdom and understanding as we seek to find you, to draw nearer to you, by following the Way–your Son, Jesus.
In His name we pray, Amen