Is not this the carpenter’s son?

Wood is a beautiful thing. The smell, the wonderful things that can be made with it. Being a carpenter required skill, observation, patience, imagination, discipline.

I often wonder how many skills Jesus learnt from his earthly Father that He used in his ministry.

The one example of Jesus’ carpentry knowledge that makes me sit up and think the most, is when Jesus is on his long walk to His crucifixion. He stops and speaks to the woman of Jerusalem as they are crying. He says at the end of his speech to them, “for if they do this when the wood is green, what will happen when it is dry?” (Luke 23:31)

I have no knowledge of wood but I was inquisitive so I took to the internet and read about wood in different states. Apparently, green wood is wood that has been freshly cut down, it is no good for burning or structure because of its high level of moisture. If you use this wood in construction in this condition the finished product will likely warp and crack as it dries. Dry wood is optimal for construction, it burns well, it is perfect for woodworking projects because of its fixed dry state.

Joseph taught Jesus about wood so deeply, that He had something to say about it even in deep agony and exhaustion.

Woodworking requires patience and interpretation, perhaps this is what Jesus is speaking of as he talks about wood.

If we are quick to chop down and build something without patience, or discernment, or though, the result will not be as expected.

We are in a season where having patience with each other and building each other up has never been more important.

Joseph is a perfect example for us to think about when feeling an urge to be hasty.

This is the man who stood by Mary so she could bear the Son of God.

Joseph, a man of interpretation and discernment of God’s word.

Joseph, a man who taught Jesus about the wood that would chop down his son’s life.

St Joseph pray for us, for patience and obedience, for discernment and deep listening, pray for us all in these times of uncertainty.

Amen.

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