Luke 2:41-52 (NRSV)
Now every year his parents went to Jerusalem for the festival of the Passover. And when he was twelve years old, they went up as usual for the festival. When the festival was ended and they started to return, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but his parents did not know it. Assuming that he was in the group of travelers, they went a day's journey. Then they started to look for him among their relatives and friends. When they did not find him, they returned to Jerusalem to search for him. After three days they found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. And all who heard him were amazed at his understanding and his answers. When his parents saw him they were astonished; and his mother said to him, "Child, why have you treated us like this? Look, your father and I have been searching for you in great anxiety." He said to them, "Why were you searching for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father's house?" But they did not understand what he said to them. Then he went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was obedient to them. His mother treasured all these things in her heart.
And Jesus increased in wisdom and in years, and in divine and human favor.
I am glad that Jesus gave us the example of being "obedient" to our parents!
If anyone should have been able to do whatever he wanted to do, and thought best, it was Jesus.
Even as a child, he must have had more wisdom than they could have ever hoped to possess and yet he chose to be obedient to his earthly father and mother.
This is a good lesson for all of us who have difficulty getting along with our parents for reasons known and unknown to us.
We are taught in scripture to "honor our fathers and our mothers that our days may be long upon the earth." (Exodus 20:12)
This is easier said than done for some of us, but God does know best.
Even if we do not always agree with our parents, we can honor them by loving them unconditionally and ever seeking their good.
As our parents age, the day will come that we must care for them, as they cared for us. It will be in these days that we find out what we are truly made out of! Although it is true that many of us may have had rocky relations with our parents when we were children, we must still treat them with dignity, grace, and compassion when they are no longer able to care for themselves.
It has been said that, "An eye for an eye leaves everybody blind!" (Ghandi)
Let us remember that LOVE is always in order; and it is through LOVE that we will always find our greatest salvation!
I am so glad that God did not give me what I deserved in my weakest hour; rather, God showed forth LOVE by sending Jesus to die on the cross to save me from my sin and gift me with eternal life.
It is my prayer, that we will offer love and mercy to our parents, when they need it most!
Let us pray: Holy One, thank you that Jesus gave me such a good example regarding how to interact with my parents. Please help me to love and honor them whether or not I feel like they deserve it and please help me to be the hands, feet, and mouth of Jesus in their lives when they need it most. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
If you have questions about how to become a friend and follower of Jesus, please see the devotion entitled, “Come to Jesus” @ http://bit.ly/JVhaLta