Philip went off to look for Nathanael and told him, “We have found the very 
person Moses and the prophets wrote about! His name is Jesus, the son of 
Joseph from Nazareth.” “Nazareth!” exclaimed Nathanael. “Can anything 
good come from there?” “Just come and see for yourself,” Philip said. - John 1:45-46

Jesus got his training for the ministry at home in Nazareth. We know very little about those thirty “silent years.” We do know Joseph died (though we are not sure when), making Jesus head of his earthly family, the breadwinner. He lived as a part of a small country community and plied a trade. These years belong to Mary and to Jesus’ brothers and sisters. Apart from these things, we know nothing.

The Gospel writers respect the silent years and do not intrude. Jesus used that time to prepare himself for his spiritual calling.

Do you live in a Nazareth? Perhaps you feel that there is nothing special about your hometown. Maybe your family is an ordinary one, which does pretty routine things. You have a so-so job and your life goes on its way, uninterrupted with much trauma. Did you know that these “silent years” are important?

The mundane atmosphere of your Nazareth does not mean you need to be a mundane Christian. “Nazareth living” can be a test of your commitment to Christ. If God called you to leave home and begin to serve him today, would you be ready? Seminaries do not servants make! Nazareths do! If these are your silent years, make sure they are busy ones. If you cannot serve God in Nazareth, he will never send you to serve him anywhere else.

For Further Study: John 1:35-51

Excerpted from The One Year Devotions for Women, Copyright ©2000 by Jill Briscoe. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers. All rights reserved.

For more from Jill Briscoe, please visit tellingthetruth.org.

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