Daily Devotional | Day 284
“So when they had performed all things according to the law of the Lord, they returned to Galilee, to their own city, Nazareth. And the Child grew and became strong in spirit, filled with wisdom; and the grace of God was upon Him” (Luke 2:39-40, NKJV).
Childhood is a precious phase in human development. Most of the experiences in your childhood will serve as a foundation for future growth. Happy and meaningful childhood memories are a treasure. It is during this time that important values, character traits and lessons are learned. A healthy childhood is vital for a healthy adulthood.
Jesus was once a child. He experienced all the developmental stages of childhood. Today’s opening Scripture gives us a summary of His childhood. Make no mistake. Jesus’s childhood wasn’t all smooth and cozy. At different times He faced adversity (Matthew 2:13-23; Luke 2:4-7). The good news is, He emerged from adversity as a strong, confident Man ready to be the Messiah.
Jesus didn’t skip steps in His childhood development. He was like us in all things (Hebrews 2:17). The Bible says, “the Child grew and became strong in spirit.” Jesus moved through a growth process. As the process unfolded, He became stronger and stronger. As the Child grew, He was “filled with wisdom; and the grace of God was upon Him.” Wisdom is necessary for growth. Foolishness in a child should be purged before it is too late. As the Book of Proverbs says, “Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child; the rod of correction will drive it far from him” (22:15).
Jesus’ childhood has a lot to do with us. It tells us that it is possible for our children to grow in wisdom and the grace of God. Wisdom, grace and strength are available not only to the Child Jesus, but to all children, especially children of Christian parents. Given the right environment, every Christian child can grow, filled with wisdom and the favor of God.
Christian parents have the anointing of God upon them. When they give birth, their child is no ordinary child. Their child is conceived and born within an environment of the Holy Spirit. As a result, the child has a great life in front of him/her. It’s important for Christian parents to realize this, capitalize on this spiritually fertile ground and develop the child accordingly. Your opinion of your child will shape how you raise him/her. If you think the child is common, you will give him/her common training. But if you recognize the grace of God upon the child, you will be careful what you do and say around the child. By the very fact that you’re a Christian, the hand of the Lord is upon the fruit of your body. Your child is sanctified because he/she came from you.
Remember, you are the temple of the Holy Spirit. If a child comes from this temple, that child is under the Spirit’s influence. No baby will come out of your body without being affected by the Holy Spirit in you. The power of the Holy Spirit in you trumps every other power that might touch the child. The Holy Spirit doesn’t ignore your baby. Because of you, His power is upon your baby right from conception. This means your child is blessed from day one.
From conception, your child is under the power of the Holy Spirit. It is not the rituals you performed at church service that made your child blessed. Your baby has had vital contact with the Holy Spirit which is in you. By this fact alone, your child is a ‘Holy-Spirit-influenced-child.’
The problem is, most Christian parents are not aware of this. Consequently, they miss out on time-sensitive opportunities to set up their children to grow in divine favor, strength and wisdom. When Gabriel told Mary that she would conceive the Messiah, her concern was how this was going to happen. Gabriel responded, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will overshadow you; therefore also, that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God” (Luke 1:35, NKJV).
In our case, however, the Holy Spirit is already upon us; He is inside us. Therefore, every child that proceeds from your body is under the shadow of the Holy Spirit in you. As a result, the baby from your body is holy, by default. The child is ‘holified,’ so to speak. Both parents don’t have to be Christians. One Christian parent is all it takes for the child to be sanctified, because the Holy Spirit in the believer ‘overrides’ every other condition. Alluding to this, Paul wrote, “For the unbelieving husband is sanctified by the [Christian] wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the [Christian] husband; otherwise your children would be unclean, but now they are holy” (1 Corinthians 7:14).
Children of Christian parents are children of promise. Let’s give our children a chance to grow like the child Jesus.
Blessing: May the blessings of the Holy Spirit be upon everything and upon everyone that comes into contact with you. In the Name of Jesus. Amen.
For further study: Judges 13:1-25 and Luke 1:5-25, 57-80