Matthew 1:23 says, “Look, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel, which means, God is with us.”

 One of my favorite Christmas hymns is “Emmanuel, God is With Us.” Several years ago while singing this song in church I just broke down and started to  weep(quite unusual for me). My sweet husband put his arm around me and asked, “Are you OK?”

I wasn’t.

I’d  been trying to control and run my own life and circumstances and was exhausted. Without going into a lot of detail, I can say I was totally stressed out about many things.

As I sang that song that morning, God really spoke to me about turning it all over to this God who is with us. At that moment I was able to release and turn over much of my anxiety, doubts, fears, confusion and hurt as I thought through the words.

“If God is with us who can stand against us? For all those who live in the shadow of death a glorious life has dawned. For all those who stumble in the darkness, behold your light has come.”

So what will be your answer? Will you hear the call of him who did not spear his son but gave him for us all. On earth there is no power, no depth or heights that could ever separate us from the love of God in Christ.

I went back to the jewelry store that Monday morning and although none of my circumstances had changed my heart was much lighter. What a weight is lifted when we give everything over to God and let him carry it. I’m tempted to take things back and need to constantly remind myself, that “if God is with us who can stand against us.” And I need to believe his promises in Romans 8:38-39 that say, “For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, not anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

2020 has been a hard year for all of us. More than ever we need to look to and trust Emmanuel, God with us for his faithfulness in years past, and trust him for present and future faithfulness. So this Christmas season soak in the peace and sense of his presence that he offers us. And the miracle that Emmanuel would come and want to be with us. 

– Pat Estes

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash