|Photo Credit: sean/mundy|
Every year I spend a week at Butler Springs Christian Camp serving a week of camp with fourth and fifth graders. This is the first full week that campers come and spend an entire week, Sunday through Friday, at camp. One of the issues we always face is homesickness. For many this is their first time away from home without parents or other family members with them. For many this is their first time disconnected from technology. For many of them this is their first time really getting dirty, playing in the woods, and learning about Jesus. With all this new or different stuff going on homesickness can show up.
Jesus has spent around thirty years on this earth by the time we find Him in our reading today. He takes the three disciples of His inner development circle up onto the mountainside with Him. He leaves the remaining nine at their basecamp in town. On the mountain side God shows up in a powerful way along with Elijah and Moses. God shares with all present that Jesus is His son. For a brief moment Jesus is reminded that this earth, full of all its dirt and grime, its lack of glory, is not His home; He is just temporarily visiting.
Immediately on their return home Jesus is reminded of the differences between earth and heaven … He is certainly not in heaven any more. The disciples left behind have been unsuccessful at casting out a destructive demon from the body of a young boy. The father comes to Jesus asking Him to do what the disciples could not … heal His boy. Jesus then utters these harsh words … “You faithless and corrupt people! How long must I be with you? How long must I put up with you? Bring the boy here to me.” (Matthew 17:17 NLT) I wander what the tone and volume of these words was. Regardless Jesus is sharing His heart. Hours before He was reminded that this earth is not His home. He was in the presence once again of God and now He has returned to the grime of our lives. How He must have been homesick.
What caused Him to be here? It was His love for us and His desire to restore the relationship torn apart because of sin. Jesus put up with all the messed up stuff we offer so that He could do life with us again. For that I am thankful.