The search for Jesus
A locked room, a garden after death, a well in Samaria, and even standing on the water in a storm on the Sea of Galilee, where do you find Jesus? Two weeks ago I talked about taking some time each Sunday to stop, to pause, to pray, to remember that this time of year isn’t simply about shopping, cooking, preparing for the arrival of family, traveling or anticipating the gift openings on Christmas morning. Last week we were able to do some stopping, as we heard our children retell the story of Christmas, and heard the choir retell it with music and readings. I certainly saw and felt Jesus in both of those events.
Sometimes, however, we find Jesus in some of the most unexpected places. It was so for the disciples on that stormy night at sea. Yet, in the midst of the storm, he was there. Notice how often God gave signs and symbols for just how to find him…the child that was to be born. Story after story has God assisting humanity in finding their way to him. So, it appears that the only way to find Jesus is to look for him. As simple as that may sound, it still helps that God offers us signs of his coming.
The search for Jesus sometimes has him being seen in the most unexpected places. Who could have expected a birth in Bethlehem, a night in a stable, or being laid swaddled in torn pieces of cloth and being laid in a cattle trough? And yet there he was? Each symbol we hold so dear this season seems to remind us that God is continually pointing us toward this Son. So where are you looking right now, particularly in the midst of the storms? What is your focus? Do you find him in unexpected places? This Sunday we’re going to be searching for Jesus, maybe in some of those unexpected places. My hope is to give you some pointers, some directions, and then turn you loose to search in this final week before Christmas.