God With Us
Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. Matthew 1:23 (KJV)
Jesus was born of a young virgin girl named Mary who believed the angel’s message that she would bring forth God’s Son. John 1:14 says that the Word (Jesus) was made flesh and lived and dwelled among us. God came to us because we could not go to God- since our sins created a barrier between us and Him. That barrier of separation is why people feel lonely when they are not in relationship with God. God, in His compassion, saw our lonely state and came to us so the barrier could be removed. For believers, even when we feel lonely, God is with us. And His Word and His presence can soothe our loneliness, especially at Christmastime.
As I write this, my heart aches for those who are alone during the holidays. I remember very clearly what it is like to be on your own at this time of year. Years ago, I went to my relatives for Christmas. I was divorced and the loneliness was strong. I remember sitting there with my cousins and their wives and feeling like the fifth wheel. I felt so out of place. But, my family loved me and Jesus was with me, and it helped to ease the pain. I actually drove my grandparents to the gathering. I could have just stayed at home by myself, isolated, licking my wounds, and feeling miserable, but instead I reached out to help someone else. I am glad I did, because it took my eyes off of myself and my situation for a bit, making me feel good for overcoming my selfishness to help someone else. I thought of my family more than myself, making the occasion more worthwhile and taking the edge off the pain.
This Christmas, as we reach out to others, especially when we are alone, we can brighten someone’s life with love and laughter. Go ahead and see if you can’t share some Christmas cheer this year. Others will be better for it, and who knows, you might have more joy! Emmanuel, God, is with you, and when you reach out, you take His presence to others. No matter the season, remember that God is with you to love you, comfort you, and make your life better.
Oh, and by the way, God brought me a wife who loves me and loves God. And today, we celebrate our 24th anniversary. God really is faithful. I have to say that through it all- my entire life- God has been with me. My hope and prayer is that you too comprehend that God is with you, not just at Christmas, but all through the year.