A humble beginning

Nazareth was not much of a town when Jesus lived there.

In fact, it had a bad reputation.  Nathanael said: “Can anything good come from there?” (John 1:46)

My wife and I got a little insight into the Nazareth of Jesus’ time when we visited a recreation of the town in modern Nazareth just a couple of weeks ago.

We looked at the little stone houses, about the size of a small room in our house in Canada.  Whole families lived in those houses.

We were shown a typical carpenter’s shop while a man wearing first century robes worked with crude tools to fashion a chair.

Not much of a beginning for someone who was going to change history and the lives of billions of people.

If you were a betting person, you would have put your money on Herod the Great as the great history maker.  Herod built palaces and temples and left his mark throughout Judea.  He ruled with power, terrorizing and killing his opponents.

But, today, we know about Herod because of Jesus.  Herod plays a bit part in the greatest drama in history.

God is like that, isn’t he?  He surprises.  He does the unexpected.

That makes me think about my own world.  Am I missing what God is doing around me?

That quiet man without much education, has he been tapped on the shoulder by God?  Is he on the way to doing something extraordinary in God’s service?

Jesus’ example also makes me think about what it takes to be great in the kingdom of God. 

Jesus told the disciples that those who are to have the leading places in his kingdom are those who serve others (Matthew 20:24-28).  God comes first in their lives – and then others.

That is a lesson I have always been slow to learn.  It calls for humility – the humility that Jesus had.

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1 comment so far

  1. Stephanie on

    Nice to read about your trip in these posts, Dad!


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