This Lenten reflection focuses in on the Gospel reading where we get a rare view of Jesus as a child, at 12 years of age. In his action to choose to stay behind in Jerusalem after the festival of Passover to reside in the temple, asking questions of teachers, and learning in the house of his Father, we see a clear example of his loyalty and belonging to both the earthly mortal realm, and the spiritual realm of the Holy Spirit.
This belonging to two realms is what the crucifix symbolizes, the tangible earthly economy of exchange and services, and the vertical realm, of the Holy Spirit, and how the two are inextricably tied.
I am taken by the young Jesus’ ability to belong easefully within both realms, with obedience and grace — and win the favor of both earthly and immortal realms, and am edified by the Epistle reading, that the promise that he would inherit the world did not come to Abraham or to his descendants through the law but through the righteousness of faith. Where law is the earthly limitation, but faith is not quantifiable.
This Lenten season, I want us to focus in on this idea of belonging to our earthly ties, but also how our actions in this tangible realm are vehicles for the larger spiritual work of our faith.