How did Jesus spend His life? After all, besides being
the Son of Mary He was the Son God. He was making this world, our world, His
very own! To tell the truth, during most of His life of about 34 years He did nothing out of
the ordinary. For about 30 of those years He fitted into the life of the people
As a child He would have played games and have
received the same kind of instruction as those of His age-group. A time
would surely have come when He would
have done something to earn a living - perhaps helping in Joseph's carpentry
shop, perhaps He grew and sold vegetables. On becoming a young man, He would have mixed with the men about town.
In other words, His life would have been very
ordinary. Since He was truly God we can be certain there was nothing sinful
about Him. But we can be sure that He didn't wear a halo as He walked the
streets of Nazareth.
There's no need to assume that because He was the Son of
God He dominated every conversation and expected to get His way whenever a
decision had to be made. His friends and relatives
probably would not have been inclined to show Him any special respect. They
would not have thought He was any better than they were.
When we reflect on the three years of the ministry of Jesus they
were in many ways spectacular, even sensational, with His various
miracles - healing the sick, raising the dead to life, feeding multitudes,
calming storm. Even now we marvel at how instructive are His teaching and preaching.
three years there was something about Jesus that caused people to swarm around
Him. They couldn't get enough of Him. They came to expect so much of Him - all
the time. He influenced the lives of so many.
In terms of time only a small fraction of the life of Jesus was
exceptional -out of the ordinary – that of the
Infancy Narratives – 3 years of public ministry - and that from His Passion to Ascension into Glory. The
balance – 30 years – was scarcely more than typical growth into manhood. It
would seem the Son of God, Jesus, went
underground - He merged with the 'grass roots' of society, of family and local community. He confined Himself to the people of Nazareth and its surroundings.
The Son of God, the Son of Man, spend most of His life
on earth in this restricted environment of family and neighbourhood. He wanted
to endorse the supreme value of the
family as the basic unit of human society. He displayed the beauty,
possibility, even the necessity, of being godly in our being together,
living,working, enjoying ourselves together.
Dare we say society stands or crumbles to the extent that we we catch
the significance of these thirty years of the life of Jesus?
These were not wasted years, opportunities lost for
making a spectacular impression of the history of mankind. When God becomes involved
Ordinary Time becomes Sacred Time; the trivial and transient assumes an eternal
value. That was true for Jesus; that
can be true for you and me!
What a difference it would make if in our own personal Ordinary Time we made the words of Jesus our
Watch-Word, "I have loved you just as the Father has love me....love one
another as I have loved you," (Jn. 15)!