Finding of Jesus in the Temple

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Read Luke 2 verses 41 to 52 after praying to the Holy Spirit to enlighten us how we can live this mystery in our lives.

When I was four years old I was lost in the zoo. We had all gone to Victoria Gardens to see the animals. I suddenly found myself separated from the rest of the family and made a mad dash for the gate. I was nearly trampled by an elephant that was giving rides to people as I ran across in front of it. At the gate I was found by our driver who held me in his arms. It was a great moment of relief and security to be embraced in his comforting arms.

Later on in the Novitiate, when I read the story of the prodigal son being embraced by his Father in Luke 15 and the Father said: "This son of mine was dead and now he is alive; he was lost and now he has been found," I remembered that scene 17 years earlier. Only now God had found me and brought me back to himself in sincere repentance to live as his beloved son.

This "finding" has recurred several times in my life, when I stray away from God and return to meet him in the sacrament of confession or in fervent prayer or in accepting the Good News. It is an ongoing story of my life and keeps me humble, lest I grow complacent. It also makes me more accepting of others in their human frailty as they come to receive salvation from a waiting God who embraces them.

Oftentimes we do not understand God's plans as they unfold at the time, like Mary and Joseph when they lost Jesus on their way back from Jerusalem. When they discovered him in the Temple they told him of their sorrow. Only later would they understand what he meant by "being in his Father's house". Parents have many plans for their children. God is also our parent and He has plans for each of his children.

We do not always understand our Heavenly Father's plans at the time. Perhaps later on we see how that child' life changed dramatically because of an accident, a failure, a sickness, an operation. Life took on another direction from what the parents had planned. But God does have a plan for each one of His children. It may take years to be realized. In His time, He makes all things beautiful.

So let us also say "Thy will be done. They kingdom come! as we wait for the unfolding of God's plan and will for each of his children.

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