Summary: Some times we are miles from home…miles from where God wants us to be, maybe even miles from Jesus.
Miles From Home
Every year Jesus’ parents went to Jerusalem for the Passover festival. When Jesus was twelve years old, they attended the festival as usual. After the celebration was over, they started home to Nazareth, but Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem. His parents didn’t miss him at first, because they assumed he was with friends among the other travelers. But when he didn’t show up later that evening, they started to look for him among their relatives and friends. When they couldn’t find him, they went back to Jerusalem to search for him there. Three days later they finally discovered him. He was in the Temple, sitting among the religious teachers, discussing deep questions with them. And all who heard him were amazed at his understanding and his answers.
His parents didn’t know what to think. "Son!" his mother said to him. "Why have you done this to us? Your father and I have been frantic, searching for you everywhere."
"But why did you need to search?" he asked. "You should have known that I would be in my father’s house." But they didn’t understand what he meant.
Then he returned to Nazareth with them and was obedient to them; and his mother stored all these things in her heart. So Jesus grew both in height and in wisdom, and he was loved by God and by all who knew him.
Illustration: Have you ever lost one of your kids?
Historical Setting: Passover…most important spiritual feast…women and children traveled up front in caravans to set the pace with the men in the back…Jesus, @ 12, could have easily from group to group. Nazareth was about 70 miles from Jerusalem…a few days journey.
1. Take Jesus Home (v 43b) "His parents didn’t miss him at first"
- The Passover was an incredible feast celebrating the original ’passover’ with Moses and the Israelites being freed from slavery.
- Every Sunday should be a similar celebration…
- What a disservice for us to leave Jesus at the feast.
- We worship…we eat from God’s Word…we pray and are prayed for…and they we leave everything at the altar or in our pew
- They didn’t miss him at first…perhaps they were distracted
2. Don’t Assume (v44a) "They assumed he was with friends"
- …that your weekly traditional attendance will get you to heaven
- …that Sunday’s meal will get through to Wednesday
- …that Pastor Meyer and this staff will teach you all you need to know about God and the Bible.
- …that 2 services a week will make you into a world changer
- …that someone else will take of the work that God has called YOU to do
3. Look in the Right Place (v49-50) "But why did you need to search?"
Do you want to know why some people don’t feel part of a church or leave a service unfulfilled?
Do you want to know why far too many fall from their faith?
- They are not looking in the right place
- The "right place" is God’s will for you
- This occasion in Jesus’ life is called the "filial consciousness", his awareness that in a unique way He was the Son of God.
- His father & mother looked for him, but he found His Father
- Others may not understand your calling…as you give things up to pursue His purpose in your life…it’s in that "looking in the right place", our own ’filial consciousness’ that we find the fullness of our relationship with God.
How do we measure that fullness…?
4. Follow Jesus’ Growth Chart (vs 40 & 52) "He grew…"
- Illustration: kids growth chart, balanced! Physical, mental, spiritual
- Physical - diet, work/rest ratio, sleep/play ratio,
- Mental - read, study, memorize, stay sharp
- Spiritual - on going daily relationship with God your Father
Some times we are miles from home…miles from where God wants us to be, maybe even miles from Jesus.
Maybe you’re here tonight and you feel miles from home.
It’s not about fulfilling the traditions of Church.
- We have to take Jesus home with us
- We have break out of our assumptions and do some work ourselves
- We have to look to fulfill God’s will in our life
- We need to follow Christ’s growth chart
Jesus may have been miles from home…but really he was home.