Prayer of Meditation on the Finding of the Child Jesus in the Temple
And he said to them, “Why were you looking for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?” But they did not understand what he said to them. He went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was obedient to them; and his mother kept all these things in her heart. Luke 2:49-51
The Finding of the Child Jesus in the Temple is both a joy and a sorrow of the hearts of Mary and Joseph. How many experiences in our own lives are a mix of both of these emotions joy and sorrow?
Oftentimes it is through parenting that we seem to be on a rollercoaster of ups and downs. Our children’s well-being is uniquely united to our own in that we want nothing more than to see them happy, healthy and successful in this life.
For Mary and Joseph, the sorrow of losing Jesus and then the joy of finding him is a prelude to the Passion and Resurrection.
We know that our body is a temple of the Holy Spirit. The search of every human heart is the search for God. The search of Mary and Joseph for Jesus represents the human heart searching for God. The finding of Him in the temple shows us that we as temples of the Holy Spirit are the Father’s house- or at least we should be.
It is significant too that this takes place while Jesus is still a child. The finding of the Divine Child in the temple highlights innocence in our worship. We receive the blessings of the Father when we become like little children. The Kingdom of God belongs to the little ones. It is in innocence and purity that we become the temple – the Father’s house.
The three days of searching for Jesus is a symbol of the Trinity and our own dying to self so that the Trinity can dwell within us in thought, word and action.
When we realize that we are a temple it permeates from inside of us outward. The Kingdom of God becomes apparent in and through us, with the many rooms of the Fathers house present within each one of us.
Mary pondered all of these things in her heart. Mary is the very essence of God’s temple herself because the Christ Child literally dwelt within her.
In this instance too she took what Jesus was telling her to the place where God could reveal to her more fully who she was and His Will was for her. Mary pondered in her heart so that the seed of God’s love would germinate within her, leading her to the understanding of who she was and who God is.
The Lord tells us in the book of Genesis that he will, “put enmity between the woman and her offspring, he will strike at your head and you will strike at his heal.” (Genesis 3:15). And in Romans that Paul tells us, “the God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet.” (Romans 16:20) Mary’s cooperation in the plan of God brings victory against sin for all of us. We too can crush the serpent – as Christ claims the victory for those in whom he dwells.
May the Kingdom of God dwell within the Temple of your body and soul.