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    Jesus as a Pre-Teen | Part 2: Parenting Principles from Mary & Joseph

    June 5, 2020

June 5, 2020

Jesus as a Pre-Teen | Part 2: Parenting Principles from Mary & Joseph

Last week, we talked about how Mary and Joseph took the journey every year to Jerusalem for the Passover. Why did they do this?

They did it because they were good parents; they were obeying God’s Word.

We can learn a lot about Joseph and Mary in this short little passage; here are three parenting principles from Luke 2.

1. Good parents are obedient to God.

When they had completed everything according to the law of the Lord, they returned to Galilee, to their own town of Nazareth. The boy grew up and became strong, filled with wisdom, and God’s grace was on him. Every year his parents traveled to Jerusalem for the Passover Festival. When he was twelve years old, they went up according to the custom of the festival. (Luke 2:39-42)

I was reading Psalm 1 recently and remembering what a beautiful Psalm it is.

How happy is the one who does not walk in the advice of the wicked or stand in the pathway with sinners or sit in the company of mockers! Instead, his delight is in the Lord’s instruction, and he meditates on it day and night. He is like a tree planted beside flowing streams that bears its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. Whatever he does prospers. (Psalm 1)

Joseph and Mary were Psalm 1 parents. They loved the Lord’s instruction and delighted in it. They knew the law and were obedient to it.

Are you in the law, the Lord’s book? Are you studying and learning what Jesus would have you to do? Joseph and Mary were good parents because they were obedient to the law.

2. Good parents don’t know everything.

After those days were over, as they were returning, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but his parents did not know it. Assuming he was in the traveling party, they went a day’s journey. Then they began looking for him among their relatives and friends. When they did not find him, they returned to Jerusalem to search for him. After three days, they found him in the temple. (Luke 2:43-46)

Good parents are not perfect, and they realize it! If you have ever raised children, you too have come to this conclusion. In fact, you’re not even close to what you need to know! A good parent is humble and recognizes that he has been given an awesome responsibility of raising children. We just don’t know it all. As a matter of fact, sometimes we don’t even know enough just to get from day one to day two! Humility is part of good parenting.

3. Good parents don’t always understand their kids.

After three days, they found him in the temple sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. And all those who heard him were astounded at his understanding and his answers. When his parents saw him, they were astonished, and his mother said to him, “Son, why have you treated us like this? Your father and I have been anxiously searching for you.” “Why were you searching for me?” he asked them. “Didn’t you know that it was necessary for me to be in my Father’s house?” But they did not understand what he said to them. (Luke 2:46-50)

It’s hard to fathom if you are a brand-new parent starting out, but there are going to be times when you do not understand your children. I just love this whole story because parents are going to make wrong assumptions. Joseph and Mary assumed that he was with them in the traveling party back to Nazareth. Our children can astound us! Sometimes in a good way, sometimes in a bad way, sometimes in a way that makes us shake our heads and say, “I didn’t see that coming!” Parents are going to be anxious. Mary and Joseph anxiously searched for Jesus, even though he was 12 and almost a man in Jewish culture. They still felt that awesome responsibility of providing for him and protecting him.

So, I hope we have learned a lot about Joseph and Mary and the three parenting principles from Luke 2 that will help guide us as we seek to fulfill the awesome responsibility that we have, that God has given us, to raise our children.

Kevin Wax

Kevin is a Pastor at Blackman Baptist Church.