It is easy for us to forget that Jesus’ ministry begins in earnest when he is well into adulthood. There is the account of his birth. Then the scene with him and his parents at the temple when he is twelve. And then these two little sentences at the end of Luke 2 that account for the majority of Jesus’ life on this planet.

Before the fanfare. Before the miracles and the parables. Before disciples and death and resurrection. Jesus spent most of his life on the plains.

He does not enter the scene at the wedding at Cana out of a Divine vacuum. His ministry begins after years and years of growth. Wisdom. Stature. Faithfulness in the mundane.

Our best moments are the result of years and years of character development, healthy living, and growth. If it is so for Jesus, how much more so for us?

Life is not just the big moments with lots of lag time in between. Life is what happens in the in-between. It is the decisions we make on the plains that determine who we are.

When Jesus’ ministry is marked by His baptism, His Father comments on the thirty years Jesus lived on the plains: “This is My Beloved Son, in Whom I am well pleased.” The Father was immensely pleased that Jesus grew in wisdom and stature being faithful at work, home, and in the neighborhood.

Do not overlook the years of everyday life. It is an opportunity to grow in wisdom and stature. An opportunity to live a great life. An opportunity to please God by being faithful in the small things; small things that turn out to be big things.

“Then he went down to Nazareth with them and was obedient to them. But his mother treasured all these things in her heart. And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man.”
– Luke 2:51-52