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.” “Why were you searching for me?” he asked. “Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?” But they did not understand what he was saying to them.
Jesus was confusing to many people. Some followers misunderstood his words and actions. His disciples were perplexed on several occasions. John says that Jesus’ brothers didn’t even “believe in him” (John 7:5). Today’s passage describes the tension that existed when God took on flesh and grew up.
When Jesus was twelve years old, he made the trip with his family for the Passover Feast in Jerusalem. At the end of their first day of travel back to Nazareth, Mary and Joseph realized that he was not in the group. They looked for him among relatives and friends but he was nowhere to be found. Can you imagine their panic as they hurried back to Jerusalem to look for Jesus? They finally found him in the temple. Listen to the emotion in Mary’s voice, “Son, why have you treated us like this? Your father and I have been anxiously searching for you.” But Jesus reminded them of who he was when he said, “Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?” Mary and Joseph didn’t understand what Jesus meant.
Jesus is still confusing to many people. But today, it’s because people choose not to read the Bible. On this side of the cross the message is clear. But staying confused is often an excuse to put off trusting Jesus and following him. How about you? Are you staying confused so you don’t have to make a personal decision about Jesus?
Father, don’t allow us to hide behind a shield of “confusion.” In Jesus’ name. Amen.
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