Divine Parenting

Today, Jude picked up a wooden ring, then tossed it back on the table.

We cheered.

Funny how those little moments are what become stamped in our memory. For Jude, those moments add up and ultimately shape his early life. Every responsive smile, touch, and embrace make a difference in who he is becoming. I watch Krista and how she cares for Jude, and I realize that her interaction with him matters. We are shaping him.

After reading Mary’s song in Luke 1 yesterday, I began thinking about Mary and Joseph’s role in Jesus’ life.  Isn’t it right to assume that the way she raised him through infancy and childhood had an impact on how his personality developed?  It seems strange to talk about Jesus, God in the flesh, “developing” a personality, but if he was truly human, then he experienced all the change and growth that every person experiences in their early years.

Mary and Joseph were chosen for a reason. God knew the kind of woman she was and the kind of man Joseph was. Their parenting would help establish the kind of man Jesus would be.

Part of the miracle of the Advent of Christ is that God put himself in a position of dependence on his creation. Baby Jesus was completely dependent on Mary to feed him, change his disgusting diapers, and to protect him from disease and danger. As much as it would make us feel better to believe it, Jesus did not come out of the womb as a 12-year old, ready to teach in the temple. He came, in a position of need and frailty, then died in a position of weakness and pain.

And Mary was in on the whole thing, more than anyone else. There would be no doubting her son. As she was there at the beginning, she was there in the end, loving him in ways that would strengthen him to accomplish his mission.

I think I understand Luke 1:42 a little bit better today…

Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb!

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