Time Out: Weekly quiet times for the youth worker’s soul.
Youth ministry has made me think about what Jesus would have been like as a teenager. I kind of wish the Bible talked about that a little bit more. Sure, teenagers were different 2,000 years ago, but it would have been really interesting to see how Jesus handled things during that whole awkward stage. All we really have is Luke 2 where Jesus was left alone for a few days and amazes people with his responses to their questions and teachings. Then we have two really powerful verses. Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man.
Think about that for a second. If Jesus grew in wisdom, does that mean that he didn’t have all wisdom already? To grow in wisdom and stature, he grew like a normal person. When he was two and figured out how to make the sounds of speech, he didn’t have a full vocabulary — he learned it.
I think sometimes we confuse sinlessness for perfection.
When the Bible talks about being perfect as Jesus was, it’s in reference to moral character, to sin. Jesus was certainly perfect in that way. But he was human too. He likely missed with a hammer and hit his hand. He fell down. He wasn’t the champion in dodge ball every single time. He probably got hit trying to make a catch and got eliminated. We often have an overly-sanitized version of Jesus that really make him seem like he lived less of a human life than he really did.
In Christianity we often emphasize Jesus divinity so much that we lose his humanity.
Here’s why that’s so important: Jesus can relate to us. Hebrews tells us that we have a high priest who can sympathize with our weakness. He’s felt temptation just like us, only even on a greater level. He’s felt shame like we have. He’s felt suffering far greater than us. Jesus is not so distant that we can’t relate to him – in fact he’s gone through this all so that he can relate.
Sometimes our sin and shortcomings keep us from Christ. In fact, they should draw us closer to him. He can understand humanity, relate to us, and loves us more than we can imagine.
Take some time to reflect on life a little bit. Is there something that you’re holding back from Jesus? Is there something that’s holding you back from Jesus? Sometimes, we don’t want to admit that these things are there. Jesus, through his life and teaching, invites to us bring them to him. Take some time in quiet reflection to think about these things.
Posted on January 16, 2012