14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.
This prophetic verse from Isaiah is at the heart of our faith. This reality, that God promised and then fulfilled with the birth of Jesus, is everything. Immanuel means “God with us.” When Jesus was born, God came in the form of an infant to live and breath among us. And God never really left. Jesus left the Holy Spirit in his place when he left his human body. God remains with us in every way.
Immanuel holds great significance for you and me. Yes, God has been with us since the beginning of time, but this truth took on a whole new meaning when Jesus was born. The astounding truth of “Immanuel” is that God put on human flesh and became one of us. God didn’t come to earth to say, “Good job, keep going,” God didn’t stop in for a chat and encouragement. God came, put on human flesh, and stayed. God didn’t send a message, he became the message.
Immanuel became one of us, lived as we live and suffered as we suffer.
What does this mean for you and me? It means no matter the challenge, you are not alone. Whatever you need, Immanuel is present. We do not worship some far-off God. We worship a God who is right beside you, this very moment. God is with us. God is for us. Thanks be to God.
God, I sometimes struggle to believe you are with me. Forgive me for not noticing your presence. Please help me become more aware of the way you are working with me and for me. Show me the big and small ways you are guiding me, calling me, and providing for me. Give me the courage to proclaim your presence and live in gratitude for your constant grace. Thank you, Lord. In the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, Amen.
Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version ® NIV ®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2014 by Biblica, Inc.®. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.