It’s the only story of the young Jesus that we have in the canon. And the traditional interpretation is to see how much smarter Jesus was than the temple teachers as “all who heard him were amazed at his understanding and his answers.” That process of selecting one passage and preaching from it is sometimes called prooftexting and it makes it easy to overlook the richness of the Scripture.
In the verse just before the favorite, Jesus is described as “listening to them and asking questions.” It wasn’t one-sided teaching, but mutual learning through an exchange of ideas.
Let’s try something that combines the classic reading method of lectio divina with art journaling. Copy the Scripture onto a piece of paper. You can keep it at 12 points or so and have multiple versions or the same one repeated. You can also have one version large enough to fill the page. As you read through slowly, circle phrases that stick out to you.
Then incorporate them into artwork by whatever method you prefer. A few suggestions:
1) Paint over the uncircled letters and then decorate around the phrases.
2) Cut the phrases out and paste them onto artwork inspired by the phrases.
3) Rewrite the phrases in a graphic form and decorate or doodle around them. You might make each phrase a separate piece of art.
For other ideas, check out Art Journaling.