Luke 2:41-43 Every year Jesus’ parents traveled to Jerusalem for the Feast of Passover. When he was twelve years old, they went up as they always did for the Feast. When it was over and they left for home, the child Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but his parents didn’t know it.
Did you ever lose a child? I’ve done it. Fortunately they survived, and I don’t think did any long-term damage. But in that moment of discovery that this life that has been entrusted to your care is no longer with you, you experience a range of emotions from anger to bewilderment to panic. Then you turn around and retrace your steps hoping to find where your paths parted. It happened to Jesus’ parents in this story. It sometimes happens to us with to Jesus and our faith. We can be going along and all of a sudden realize that somewhere along the way Jesus, who once seemed to be with us, isn’t there anymore. Maybe that’s where you are now. The only thing to do is to turn around (this is what repentance means) and return to where you were last connected to Christ. It may be in church at the holidays. It may be in an experience of nature. It may be in reading the Bible. It may be in sharing with a friend. Where ever you are in your faith, look around. If Jesus isn’t there, turn around and reconnect. Just like in the story, Jesus is still where you left him.