Thursday, December 31, 2009

Beyond Christmas (Section 6d of the Nameless Luke Advent Thingee)

Home Alone

Happy New Year! I know I’m a little early, but I’ll be a little late if you check out the blog tomorrow.

I can’t believe we’ve made it through an entire month, working through the first two chapters of Luke. I hope it has helped keep you in the season of Advent, anticipating the revelation of God’s great love as He stoops to communicate to us in a way we understand – through the life of a man who was born as a baby in Bethlehem.

I was going to show my kids the movie Home Alone this year, but it was checked out at Blockbuster. Our passage today, oddly enough, relates a bit to home alone, but in an unexpected way. The passage begins with a faithful family (we’ve been through that) that travels each year to the temple. (Are you seeing how this is developing?) Read the rest of Luke 2 and see if you notice the twist.

Read Luke 2.41-52

Did you get it? Jesus wasn’t “home alone” in Nazareth when his family went on their journey. He was “home” in the Temple with His Heavenly Father. His residence was in Nazareth, but His home was with God.

This passage aligns Jesus with God the Father and starts to establish His identity as Messiah and preparing for Him to break on the scene ready for ministry.

Alignment with God. That’s an interesting thing to think about as we look forward to 2010. Some people are dismissive of resolutions and goals. I do them some years and not others, but nobody can dispute the need for some self-evaluation, or at least some Spirit-guided personal reflection on how well one is aligned with God.

Where are you with God? Where are you out of alignment? The last verse of this passage gives some potential areas where you may be out of alignment with God.

Jesus grew in wisdom. The mind is a vital battlefield when it comes to living the life God desires for you. Are you committed to an active life of the mind?

Jesus grew in stature. He was a growing boy, but God gave you a body to take care of. How are you doing? I need some work on this one, personally.

Jesus grew in favor with God. Are you aligned with God in the sense that you are pursuing relationship with Him? Seeking to be His friend? The first commandment is to love God with everything you’ve got.

The second commandment is like it. Jesus grew in favor with man. He grew socially. God created us to love our neighbors.

God has created you as a whole person. Mental. Physical. Spiritual. Social. Where do you need to better align with God in one or more of these areas in 2010?

May God bless you as you pursue Him in 2010. Happy New Year!

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