Wisdom From His Early Years
by Impact Church
Luke 2:40 And the child grew, and waxed strong in spirit, filled with wisdom; and the grace of God was upon him.
Luke 2:51 And he went down with them, and came to Nazareth, and was subject unto them: but his mother kept all these sayings in her heart. 52. And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man.
Ever thought of the adolescent years of Jesus? You know those early years of scraped knees, tantrums, mud puddle jumping and first day of kindergarten? It’s a period of His life we seldom give consideration, but to the interested there’s a lot of wisdom and life hidden in the obscure years of Jesus’ childhood.
Ever envisioned Jesus giving Mary an ugly face to steamed squash; or face-planting on his first attempt at walking; or, God forbid, in Joseph’s carpenter’s shop hitting the wrong nail? Ouch! WWJD!? Blasphemous!? Be honest here saints. Yet, this perfect One of whom we speak came in the likeness of sinful flesh; a condescension of sinless mercy to the untouchable essence of our sinfulness; for our sakes He came and for His glory we believed. For it’s from the reality of His own raw humanity that we can even relate to Him, and from His divinity we’re made partakers of a divine life we’d otherwise never dream!
We possess volumes of His adulthood, some in glorious settings and some quite inglorious (according to our own perception of course). But in His early years, other than getting mischievously separated for a few days from His parents at twelve, we have little of the day-to-day affairs of Jesus’ childhood.
Drawing from the scriptural texts at the outset, Jesus’ development as a child in character, ethic, wit and personality, were apparently the product of strategic and purposeful care, and most through wise associations. And though the particular manner in which He was groomed and acculturated as a young child are oft but supposition and surmising (drawn from the scant sketches of Jewish history, generational storytelling and recent archaeology), we know Joseph, Mary and Jewish life afforded a plethora of friends, teachers, mentors and coaches- all necessary for social, academic and religious excellence.
We find now a single word in the text from which the foundation and root of favor, growth, character and confidence were grown in Jesus as a child- and are now by faith in us and in our children! In the world, it’s a word scarcely found in its vocabulary and even more vacuous in its living. But to the children of God, it holds the key to fruitfulness and our inevitable image of Christ!
Couched tightly and easily overlooked in the text of verse 51, we find the simple clause; Jesus was “subject to them”. That action verb “subject” is immeasurable in determining the outcome and success of any developing child. Without a willingness to be compliant and obedient to those who are assigned to our care, we swerve from the path loaded with essential provisions and blessings, to one of toil and self preservation.
For it’s in the will to be subject and obedient to assigned authority that every virtue of God’s nature is exemplified; and more importantly, the spiritual action through which blessings unceasingly come and go. It goes without saying; the opposite is as powerfully verifiable as the other. Jesus grew, was made strong, increased in wisdom and was favored of men and God- not from His birth, identity, status or ability- but from His will to obey, trust and follow those who were given stewardship of His life! The crowns of Jesus, and many they will be, were initially forged on the daily anvil of a child honoring his superiors! May we never disassociate Jesus’ subjection as a child to His parents and caretakers from the subjection required as a man for following His heavenly Father’s will. That culminated in the destined glory of Gethsemane and Calvary!
Wherever there’s an increased culture of rebellion, disobedience or anarchy- whether in home, school, church or government- so the blessings of favor and grace inherently decrease. As light and darkness never cohabit the same room, so contentious minds never coexist with the Spirit of obedience and humility- they won’t, they can’t, now or never. Sadly, it’s a critical truth missed by the masses; thus millions exist in survival mode, distant from the exploration of Christ’s joy and peace and absent from the enjoyment of sharing it with others.
As a new school year begins and Impact students, teachers, coaches, mentors and administrators launch into their respective roles, our prayer is that we all increasingly honor, respect and edify every human being in our realm; whether we’re giving instruction or receiving it, whether they deserve it or not, and whether it’s reciprocated or not. That we hold no prejudice, bias or grudge against anyone, but look to advance Kingdom virtues in every setting or environment we find ourselves assigned! That we anticipate good in every social interaction by offering hope to empty hearts and making visible the joy we’ve found in following Jesus’ pattern of humility and obedience. It’s an uncommon recipe to trust, I know… but an uncommonly blessed path to those desiring to emulate!
So we anticipate increased blessings and favor this school year to all of Impact Church, especially to those integrated in the various systems of our children’s education! We love you all! And we believe for the tangible influence you’re assigned as salt and light leaders to affect every sector of human life!