Finding Jesus - Beginning at Home
December 26, 2021: Holy Family Sunday
Jesus was first seen by shepherds, who “found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in a manger.” The first people to find Jesus found him in the context of a family. And this is where most people find him. Most of us meet Jesus at home.
But many don’t. In many families the presence of Jesus is not felt or visible. This is true also in the family of the human race. In all of us, to some degree, God’s image is distorted. Other people can draw us to Jesus or drive us away from him. Or just leave us ignorant of the Savior of the world.
That is why, in the Opening Prayer today, we ask that we might “live as the holy family, united in respect and love.” It is not ordinary human togetherness we are asking for. We are asking to be deeply united in the “communion of the Holy Spirit,” with an awesome respect for each other as made divine by “the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ.” We ask to experience the love between us as “the love of God” poured out in our hearts, expressed by us to one another.
This is possible because in Jesus God came and “made his home” with us (John 1:14). That is why his name is “Emmanuel: God-with-us.” In Jesus God is present to us as a human among humans. We can deal with him in the same human ways we deal with each other. And Jesus acts in and through each one of us to reveal his truth and express his love to everyone we deal with — beginning in the home.
We ask that our homes might be previews of heaven, homes in which we experience the “joy and peace of our eternal home” with God. This is the sign that we are living by the Spirit of God: “The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control” (Galatians 5: 22-23).
Where these are the Spirit is, and we are united in Christ. If these are in our home, we will reveal and find Christ there.
Daily Practice: Consider each of the fruits of the Holy Spirit (love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control). Pick one you are drawn to thinking more deeply about. Then find a way to use that gift in your home life.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, please increase in me the gifts of your Holy Spirit so that I may more fully live as Your body by expressing Your love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control to my family members.