Have you ever failed to recognize someone you know? Maybe you have been to family reunions every two years for many years now, but suddenly you see a cousin you do not recognize right away. You look and look at this stranger and then suddenly realize who it is, amazed at the change that has occurred in the last two years.
Or maybe you have experienced seeing someone in a new light. It could be hearing someone sing a beautiful song that you had previously never heard sing. Or it could be seeing your child demonstrate a ‘new’ skill or newfound maturity in a setting other than at home. You smile and nod your head and purposefuly file away the memory.
In our story today, Mary and Joseph discover Jesus is missing. After three days of frantic searching, they finally find him sitting in the temple. He is holding court with the temple priests. They are astounded by Jesus’ questions and His insights as they discuss God, faith, the Law, and so on. But Mary and Joseph see none of these things at this point. Their boy is found and in a sudden release of panic and fear, they scold Jesus for treating them this way. Instead of seeing Jesus sitting rightfully among these wise and learned men, they only see a misbehaving twelve-year-old. But all is not lost as at the end we read that later Mary treasures all of these things in her heart.
This story makes me ponder – do I too sometimes not see Jesus for who He really is? Do I want to keep Him boxed into something I think I know? Do I sometimes fail to extend the love that He has planted within me? Or… do I sometimes not see Jesus in the person standing right in front of me?
Scripture reference: Luke 2: 41-52