Wednesday, December 7, 2011

I thought he was with you...

It's something that happens to every parent at one time or another...they forget their child. I don't mean they forget they have a child...they just leave them somewhere. (At least I hope I'm not the only parent to ever do this!)

Mind you, I only did this once and it was YEARS ago. My husband and I had to be at the church at different times so we took two cars. After church, we didn't even touch base with each other...we were both so busy. It wasn't any big deal, we'd be home in a few minutes and catch up over lunch. I gathered up my materials from my class and headed home. I think I was there a couple of minutes before I asked, "Where's Levi?" That's when I heard those words every parent hates to hear..."I thought he was with you."

Needless to say I rushed back to the church where I was greeted by my son and a friend, who was laughing her head off at me, by the way. He was fine - I was a mess.

So why did I tell you this story on this Journey to Advent? Not sure, but for some reason today I thought about the story in Luke where Mary and Joseph we headed home and realized that Jesus wasn't with them.
Luke 2:41- 49

[41] Every year his parents went to Jerusalem for the Feast of the Passover. 
[42] When he was twelve years old, they went up to the Feast, according to the custom. 
[43] After the Feast was over, while his parents were returning home, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but they were unaware of it. 
[44] Thinking he was in their company, they traveled on for a day. Then they began looking for him among their relatives and friends. 
[45] When they did not find him, they went back to Jerusalem to look for him. 
[46] After three days they found him in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. 
[47] Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers. 
[48] 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."
[49] "Why were you searching for me?" he asked. "Didn't you know I had to be in my Father's house?" 

I can't imagine what it must have been like for Mary to get that far on their journey and then realize Jesus wasn't there. Like any mother, she probably grabbed Joseph and hurried back to the place she'd last seen her child. Imagine her relief when she found him, teaching in the temple.

I'm sure by now, you see where this random thought is going. I'm on a Journey to Advent and I'm wondering if I've forgotten Jesus. In the middle of all the preparations, the gift buying, the decorating, and the holiday cheer, have I forgotten why I'm supposed to be doing it all? Have I forgotten Jesus?

How far have I gotten down the road, and how could I have not realized He wasn't with me on the way? I need to go back to where I last saw Him, last sensed Him and His presence. If I follow the passage, I will find Him in the temple.

My first thought was, I need to go to church - but I'm already doing that. For some, that is where they are busiest! So I decided to look up what the temple was. According to one source, in classical Jewish belief, the Temple acted as the figurative "footstool" of God's presence. So that's it; I will find Jesus not necessarily when I go to church, but when I take the time to sit in God's presence. 

Christmas is less than three weeks away. The pace of life is moving faster and faster as we get closer to the December 25th...and to the end of another year on earth. Will I keep on moving, or will I realize in the midst of the crowds and the noise, I don't have Him. Will I turn around and take the time to sit at God's feet so that I can once again find Jesus?

Or will I continue on my way saying, "I thought He was with you..."?

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