What a task! Imagine knowing that your child – and first one, at that – was destined to be your people’s long-awaited Messiah. No guinea pigs to hone your parenting skills – just BAM, right out of the chute. When I consider the responsibility involved of raising my own children – all very special in their own right, but ultimately rather normal – I’m sometimes taken aback. I can’t imagine the being told that my first child was GOING to become the President of the United States, the next CEO of GM, or Billy Graham – you get the picture. I’m sure I’d find the prospect rather intimidating, to say the least. I expect that Mary and Joseph had similar concerns. As I mentioned in an earlier post, I suspect that this is at least part of the reason behind a young Mary going to visit her pregnant relative – Elizabeth, the wife of the priest – Mary needed insight as to what it would mean to be the mother of the Messiah!
While I’m sure they weren’t perfect – what first time parents are – the last half of Luke 2 gives some parenting insights that any Christian parent would do well to heed. In short, they ensure that the young Jesus is well established in their faith in God and the standards/expectations of their people/community. Continue reading Parenting Points – Advent Reflections from Luke
Its not the way I would have gone about it. Lets be honest, which of us would? Entrusting the birth and raising of Messiah – the Mighty One of Israel, the Light of the Gentiles – to a young, unmarried, teen-aged girl!
Think about it? Could Mary possibly understand what she was getting herself into, let alone understand the implications of raising the Messiah? At one level, its clear she needed help. I presume at least part of the reason for her traveling across the better part of Palestine had little to do with mere family obligations to a relative. Rather, I assume she was at least somewhat overwhelmed with what she had agreed to and needed the insight of Elizabeth, wife of the priest, a faithful servant of God. And, if we’re honest, as we look at Mary’s response to Elizabeth’s greeting (Luke 1:46-55), its clear that Mary’s understanding of her son’s purpose is not quite in alignment with what God had in mind for the moment. Far from the Suffering Servant come to free mankind from the tyranny of sin, it seems Mary (understandably) understood her son’s purpose as God’s means to free her people from the tyranny of Rome and to establish Israel’s primacy in the world. Yet, despite her inexperience and incomplete understanding of God’s program, He chooses her! Continue reading Just a Teen? – Advent Reflections from Luke