It Matters to Me
Luke, Chapter 3 is evidence of the writer’s intellect, I decide. Luke, a physician explored and recorded the lineage of Jesus. It would be easy to avoid the 15 verses with challenging names, like skipping over the Book of Leviticus on yet another plan to read through the Bible.
But, it is relevant, this lineage, this record of ancestry.
All the relatives of Joseph and thereby Jesus, the Son of God.
“the son of Enos, the son of Seth, the son of Adam, the son of God.”
Luke 3:38 ESV
It matters to me, the humanity of Jesus, the lining up of people, just like the people lined up before me.
Makes me reflect on our genetics and our similarities, the ones before me, making straight my way through the memories of their own ways.
“Every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be made low, and the crooked shall become straight, and the rough places shall become level ways,”
Luke 3:5 ESV
My grandma made the best of paths she may have thought might be straight, she made it through the crooked places and leveled her life with scripture and determination, she always made a way.
I told my “Aunt Boo” that I felt my grandma with me and in me. I’ve sold hand-painted Christmas cards this year.
I remembered her carefully designing her velvety Christmas ornaments, covered in pieces and parts of old jewelry.
She used the long stick pins and carefully created elaborate pieces. I see her now.
She’s in the room they added on, the double bed filled up the room and there was space just wide enough for her beside it. She retreated to this place, I was invited in to sit quietly on the bed.
A dresser was covered with sectioned flat containers, sparkly, metallic, extravagant and antique. She stood for hours, her tiny frame steady, her hands working constantly. No words spoken and her mouth set just so, her tongue tipped up toward the curve of her lip, peeking through, she worked with her mouth “set just right”.
She was industrious. She placed the ornaments in big flat boxes and with her little memorandum pad, she loaded her car and she made her deliveries.
I am forever impacted by her choice to pursue something so joyful, to do something that was fully and completely her choice to do.
It matters to me, this characteristic of my grandmother in me.
I’ve been selling my art again.
Luke reminds us that everything is purposeful and everything matters.
In the first verses of Chapter 3, John begins to tell of a new concept, repentance and forgiveness of sins. Isaiah the prophet had written of John, a voice that would come from the wilderness. The same John who “jumped” in his mother, Elizabeth’s womb while in the room with Mary, pregnant with Jesus, this John would baptize many and baptize Jesus.
And Jesus heard his father, God say, “you are my son”.
“Now when all the people were baptized, and when Jesus also had been baptized and was praying, the heavens were opened, and the Holy Spirit descended on him in bodily form, like a dove; and a voice came from heaven, “You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.””
Luke 3:21-22 ESV
It’s doubtful I’ll ever be a theologian, doubtful I’ll return to any further education.
Life and God are my teachers now.
Life, the enormity of it around me, exposure to wisdom, thoughts, experiences. God helps me see the relevance of Him in it all.
I’ve just finished reading an article I’ll read again and maybe more. The wisdom of a man over why his ancestry is significant, why clarity matters, why approaching things hidden or unexplored is something we all should do.
It is never too late.
Two gentlemen, both guys who are wise and caring and ones I respect, pointed me in the direction of this piece.
We are all individuals formed by those who made us. Our heredity is more than physical, it is experiential.
It is a brave choice to consider the weaving of our ways, to look at them and say, oh, I see now this horrible or wonderful thing, how it made me, me.
Some might wonder what these thoughts have to do with Christmas. I get that.
I don’t know why; but, I said a long series of “thank you, Gods” beside my bed today. It began and then just became a spontaneous building of more and more. God kept up the conversation, brought to memory all of my before to say hey, look at now!
This life I have, this life I know.
It is absolutely a life of hope. My lineage and my life experiences at one time convinced me it could never be so.
Like Luke details the way the 30 year old Jesus came to be, it is similar for you and me.
The breath of heaven that brought Jesus is the same breath of God that created you and me.
On purpose and with purpose that life causes us to sometimes lose. I told someone yesterday I wish I hadn’t returned to art so late in life.
One of my thank yous this morning was that I am here and I have art and life and so much more.
I have hope.
Advent, the days before Christmas, these are the days to have hope.
It matters to me that my grandma chose hope, that she became independent in her pursuit of making beautiful things, that she was about my age when she began this thing that kept her captivated, made her feel significant, brought joy to so many.
It matters to me that I got to see what I didn’t understand as hope back then, but understand it now.
She prepared the way for me. I pray I’m preparing the way for my own daughter, my son and all the other children yet to come.
Luke, a Book about the life of Jesus. I’m no seminarian, I’m just sharing what he’s bringing to light …24 Days of Jesus, my Advent Experience.