God With Us
God With Us
“The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call Him Immanuel, which means ‘God with us’.” Matthew 1:23
My five year old son, Eli, went into a cave for the first time. As we descended into the cold, dark, damp cave entrance, Eli, looked at me and said, “Dad, do bears live here?” I explained that bears do not live in Australia (where the cave was located). He paused to comprehend this information. Then Eli boldly declared, “Well… even if there are bears in this cave, I’m not scared because God is with me.”
Christmas reminds us that God is with us. In the past God spoke to the Israelites through prophets, but now God has spoken to us by his Son, Jesus (Hebrews 1:1-3). In His great love for us, God chose to be with us.
Our lives are radically transformed when we realize that God wants to walk with us in our brokenness and pain. He is not a God who is distant from us. He is a God who seems affected by what we do in time and space. Even in the darkest cave, the trust that we have in Jesus Christ as our salvation gives us bright hope.
In TransformNation, MSI’s teacher training program, I have seen the lives of many young adults changed by understanding that God is with them in their brokenness. Tracy was one of these people. She came from a remote tribe where God was perceived as a distant authoritarian figure. To her, God was to be feared and she did not believe that God would enter her world. Then one night in a prayer meeting all that changed. As she was sitting in silence she tried to listen for the voice of God. God whispered something profound to her. God said to Tracy, “I am with you, I love you, and I chose you to be here.”
God, the Maker of the heavens and the earth, loved Tracy enough to whisper to her words that she desperately needed to hear.
As Tracy shared this story with me, tears ran down her face, for she may have thought God was with her, but that night she knew God was with her.
We may not all hear from God as Tracy did, but this Christmas, we know that God has already told us that He is with us by sending Jesus to be born as a little vulnerable baby.
(Lloyd & Grace – MSI Leaders)