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Jesus Didn’t Come to Save You

04 Jan

Luke 2:41-52 (The First Sunday of Christmas, Dec 27, 2015)

Have you ever wondered why Jesus was so disrespectful to his parents? As a kid, I would try and use this text as an excuse to my mom about why I didn’t do my chores. “Rob,” she’d say, “Why didn’t you take out the garbage like I asked?”
“There were other things that were more important, mom. Just like Jesus said to his mom, ‘did you not know that I must be in my father’s house?’”
That didn’t over well.
But the fact remains that Jesus doesn’t do what he’s told. He didn’t do it then, and he doesn’t do it now.
Things take a bad turn, life overwhelms us, our path is dark and scary, terrible things happen. Disappointments come, hopes are dashed, lives are snuffed out, expectations are shattered, despair nags.
And with Mary, we ask, “Why have you treated us like this?” Isn’t Jesus supposed to help us? Isn’t he supposed to be in our corner pulling for us?
Yet we ask with Mary, “Why have you treated us like this?”
Even at twelve years of age, Jesus doesn’t do what others tell him to do.
And Jesus answers, “Why were you searching for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?”
You see, we know where Jesus has gone. He’s about his Father’s business. Even at twelve years old, he’s focused on God’s work.
But we can’t let go of our own expectations for Jesus. We still believe he came to fulfill our wishes and our wants. We still want him to do what we tell him to do. We actually believe he came to make our lives better, easier, more fulfilling. We continue to expect him to remove the obstacles, pave our way, supply our desires.
And when Jesus disobeys us, we can’t figure it out and ask, “Why have you treated us like this?” We’ve been searching for you with great anxiety. You owe us more than this.
Even at twelve years of age, Jesus doesn’t do what we tell him to do.
And Jesus answers us, “Why were you searching for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?”
You see, we know where Jesus has gone. He’s about his Father’s business. Even at twelve years old, he’s focused on God’s work.
If we go looking for Jesus so that our lives will be better, we won’t find him in our own expectations. We won’t find him in our own desires, even our very noble and selfless ones. Because Jesus wasn’t born to fulfill our expectations. He didn’t live so that our lives could be the way we wish they could be. Jesus didn’t die and rise for me at all.
No, Jesus came to be about God’s business. Jesus was born, lived, died, and was raised to fulfill God’s expectations, not our own. He came in order to show God’s love, God’s forgiveness, God’s compassion in the world.
The good news for us in these days is that God’s love, forgiveness, and compassion include us. Even when things take a bad turn, life overwhelms us, our path is dark and scary, terrible things happen. Disappointments come, hopes are dashed, lives are snuffed out, expectations are shattered, despair nags, and we ask “why have you treated us like this?”
Jesus answers with amazingly good news. He says, “I must be in my Father’s house, doing God’s work. Which means I love you, am with you, and I care for you.” That’s been God’s work all along.
It’s there, of course, that we find Jesus. In love, compassion, and forgiveness. Not so much in our own expectations and desires, but in God’s.
In the difficult times when we need to ask why Jesus treats us this way, we get the best answer of all: Jesus is always about God’s love and compassion. For all people. At all times. Even for you. Even today. No matter what. Whether we expect him there or not. Jesus came for God’s business, and God’s business is loving you.

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Posted by on January 4, 2016 in Sermon

 

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