Just after 4 am, the train roared down the tracks, horns blaring, “Coming through. Coming through.” There’s no chance of sleep when the iron horse rides, for me or the dogs at the end of the bed. Too cold to drag out of my comfy cocoon, I pulled the covers tighter and pondered a bit. “Lord, what should I write about today?” Seven simple words came to mind. “I must be about My Father’s business.”
When You Lose the Son of God
You may remember this story, but here’s a quick review and Leanna Paraphrase. It comes from Luke 2:41-52. Joseph, Mary, and Jesus went to Jerusalem for the Passover every year. They traveled in a caravan, probably for safety’s sake, so there was always a crowd around.
By the time He was twelve, Jesus was probably familiar with the city and comfortable moving around there. I’m not sure how it happened that He slipped away, but his parents headed back home with the caravan after the Passover like always. After a day’s journey, they realized Jesus was missing, and went back to search for Him.
The search for the missing Savior
I imagine Mary and Joseph looked in all the typical “boy” places, maybe the souk or the pool of Siloam. He had vanished, or so it seemed. Imagine their panic for a moment. God entrusted them with His only Son and they lost Him. Consider how you’d explain that problem to the Almighty.
Finally, they went to the temple, the last place imaginable for a young boy to hide. He was in plain sight, sitting in the midst of the teachers, having a lovely conversation and asking questions.
Mary responded like every other scared mother in the world. “We were scared to death and thought something had happened! We’ve looked everywhere for you! What were You thinking?”
The Divine perspective
Jesus just smiled and shook His holy head. “Mom, why were you worried? Didn’t you know I have to be about My Father’s business?”
The twelve year old God-boy saw the opportunity to speak with the most learned scholars in Israel, and He took it. Surely those teachers realized He was no ordinary boy, for His insights came only from God. Did they wonder whether He might be the Messiah? Maybe. Seated at their feet, He challenged them with His words and planted hope in their hearts. The warmth and mystery of their meeting would stay with them for years.
Start early to accomplish God’s will
Even at twelve years old, Jesus kept His eye on the end goal, paved the way for His coming public ministry, and never looked back. I lay, snuggled under layers of blankets, and wondered what my life would’ve been like if I had “been about My Father’s business” at such a tender age. What if I had focused so completely on doing God’s will? I’d have a different life and, possibly, the world might be a little different, too.
In 1872, Henry Varley spoke words that still ring true today.
“The world has yet to see what God can do with a man fully consecrated to him. By God’s help, I aim to be that man.”
Varley’s vision was of men and women so surrendered to God that their lives focused on “being about their Father’s business.”
It’s not too late.
We, too, can, and must, surrender to such a degree that our first priority is to be about the business of our Lord, to love Him with all of our being, to love our neighbor as ourselves, to make disciples everywhere we go.
Today, let’s ask ourselves this hard question: Am I completely surrendered to God’s will and work? Am I focused on “my Father’s business?” If not, let’s take a step closer and ask Him to make His will our own. We, too, can do our part to change the world for Him.
And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? wist ye not that I must be about my Father's business? Luke 2:49 KJV