A CHILD'S LIFE OF JESUS

500 WITNESSES
Everyone was now back from Jerusalem ~
Jesus' apostles, his family, his friends.  
They decided to have a kind of funeral for
him ~ a time to remember his life.

There was no body, and some people weren't
sure about the story he had come back to
life.  But they loved him and wanted to have
this funeral.

Five hundred people came to his funeral. His
apostles were getting ready to talk about
Jesus' wonderful life when everyone got a
big surprise.  There was Jesus standing in
front of all 500 of them!  At his own funeral!

Jesus announced that he would like to say
hello to every one of them.  So they lined
up, and one by one were able to talk to
Jesus and touch him.  "Thank you, Jesus"
they all wanted to say.

Here came one of the shepherds ~ now old ~
that the angels had appeared to when Jesus
was born.  Then some people from the
wedding where he turned water to wine.  
"Thank you, Jesus."

Then Nicodemus and Joseph who buried
him.  Then the woman Jesus met by the well
in Samaria.  Then Captain Demetrius, his
maid, and the little boy Jesus healed.  Then
Chuza and Joanna and their little boy who
Jesus healed.  "Thank you, Jesus."

There were people he had healed of
blindness and deafness and various diseases.
There were people with missing legs and
hands that he made grow back, and people
with shriveled legs and hands that he made
fill out and whole again.  "Thank you, Jesus."

There were people who he had cast bad
angels ~ demons ~ out of.  And the man who
couldn't move and was lowered through
Peter's roof to be healed.  And the other
man who couldn't move that Jesus healed by
the pool.  "Thank you, Jesus."

There was the woman who had pretended she
was a wife to the man who treated Jesus so
bad at his dinner.  And the woman who had
done the same bad thing with some of the
priests and had been saved from stoning.  
"How can we ever thank you, Jesus?"

There was the woman whose back was bent
over and was made straight by Jesus.  And
the young man Jesus brought back to life
and his widowed mother.  And the girl Jesus
brought back to life and her parents.  "We
will thank you forever, Jesus."

Then a woman walked up by herself.  She
was Mary, Jesus' mother.  Everyone gave
them time.  They hugged and hugged.  Jesus
did not want to let go of his mother.

Jesus' brothers and sisters joined them.  
They hugged Jesus.  God had picked out a
good family for Jesus to grow into manhood
with.  

One of them said, "Jesus, we grew up with
you.   What we're about to do is really hard
for us.  But we're willing to try."

Then Jesus' brothers and sisters slowly
knelt at his feet.  They had grown up with
the Son of God.  Even Jesus' mother bowed
before him.  They all had to start thinking
of him, not as their brother or son, but as
their God.