Chapter 6.2 My Father's House
Alone with the Father, original pencil drawing by L. Lovett, 1984
Alone with the Father, original pencil drawing by L. Lovett, 1984 (CLICK on the image above for a LARGER version)

Jesus’ teenage years and early manhood now began. It is not known whether or not he went to Jerusalem on recurring feasts; but his parents, seeing his passion, must have attended as many as they could afford. Mary, who was closer to him than any others of the family, recognized that her son was changed after his first visit to Jerusalem. There seemed to be a new purpose in his studies, an eagerness for knowledge that could hardly be satiated. But since sons almost always took up the occupation of their father, the young man now began to work in the carpenter shop more actively, under Joseph’s quiet direction. There was much to learn here too, and he devoted himself to it with all the intensity that he put into everything he did.

During the time Jesus worked, his mind was always busy studying the Scriptures. He knew he was destined to be more than a carpenter; and each time he prayed, his Heavenly Father gradually revealed to him that he was truly the Son of God and Savior of the world. But in the meantime, the Messiah had to be content to be a carpenter’s son and older half-brother of James, Joses, Jude, and Simon.

Although Joseph fully realized that Jesus was not his own flesh and blood son, he had always treated him as one, taking much pride in the signs of his becoming a scholar and his undoubted skill in working with tools on wood and stone. Between the youth and the elderly man was a warm relationship of mutual respect and love that grew as his son increased in stature and wisdom with the passing of the years. Finally seized by a grave illness, Joseph went to join his God, secure in the knowledge that Jesus would care for the family as lovingly and capably as he himself had always done.

The intelligent, eager Son of the Commandment grew up into a very wise man. He was a perfect man; all his gifts were perfectly balanced; and his physical appearance reflected the perfection of his inner being. With the outward experiences and silent inward teaching of the Holy Spirit, he was prepared when his Heavenly Father told him to put down his carpenter tools to carve the way for the redemption of humankind.

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