Since then we have a great High Priest who has passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to our confession. For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who was in every sense tempted like we are, yet without sin. Let us then come with confidence to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
– Hebrews 4:14-16 MEV
One night I was reading a children’s Bible story to the three young children we had at the time (the other two were taxiing up to the runway).
I don’t remember what Bible story I read from the children’s Bible with all the pictures, but I do remember the conversation that ensued. The children started asking what Jesus was like at their age and got pretty excited about the subject. It suddenly felt like a Jesus-themed episode of a Jeopardy! kids’ tournament.
“Did Jesus have chores when He was a kid?”
“Did Jesus have to go to school when He was little?”
“Did Jesus wrestle with His brothers?”
“Could Jesus throw a perfect curveball when He was a kid?”
“When Jesus got the flu as a kid did He heal Himself or just skip school and wait it out?”
Adults can learn a whole lot about God through the questions children ask.
I’d not given much thought to this issue previously, but the kids were onto something. I explained to our children that, yes, our God Jesus knew what it was like to be their age. Jesus had to learn to take His first step, drink from a cup, say words, read words, obey His parents, get along with His siblings, and figure out how to both climb up and down a tree.
Jesus experienced all of the life stages that we do, including the prenatal in Mary’s tummy, the first year as a baby, the toddler years (ages one to three), the preschool years (ages three to five), the grade school years (ages five to twelve), the teen years (ages thirteen to eighteen), and the ensuing young adult and adult years. Jesus knew what it was like to trip and fall, start to grow facial hair, have your voice crack awkwardly in puberty, and eventually become an adult.
As I sat on the bed with the kids getting ready to lay hands and pray over each of them, it dawned on me how wonderfully helpful it is that Jesus Christ is a God everyone can relate to at whatever life stage they find themselves.
Furthermore, Jesus can relate to and understand what we are going through at every life stage, making Him the perfect person to lead and guide us forward.