Emmanuel – God with us!
These are words spoken prophetically 100s of years before Christ was born. Words picked up by Matthew, one of the Gospel writers.
Emmanuel – God with us. Or perhaps you ask, God with us?
As I write the fighting in Aleppo has drawn to an end but the reality is there has been so much sorrow, bloodshed and atrocity.
Across Europe and the Middle East, many displaced families are seeking to cope. Just the other day I was visiting again a family here – yes they are safe here but still there are all kinds of stresses (and a desire if only it were possible to be home in Syria).
God with us?
In the world of politics there has been much shaking in the US, the EU and the UK referendum, Cuba and Indonesia to name just some places. During 2017, there are elections here in the Netherlands, Germany and France. All kind of speculation is happening as to what will happen.
God with us?
The angel song to the shepherds declared,
“Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace to people on whom his favour rests” (Luke 2:14)
Christ came to this world and all its mess and complications. Mankind was not abandoned. These years on, we are still not abandoned.
I recognise there are many questions we face about how our world is. Peace often seems far away from earth!
But are we open to being open? That is to giving glory to God and allowing His peace in our lives and to seek to extend this to others? (The root idea is ‘shalom’ – which encompasses His wholeness and completeness not just an absence of conflict)
Mankind is not a Mission Abandoned!
He is Emmanuel, God with us! His Holy Spirit continues to be at work among people. That might sound a bit vague but He really is at work. Do you see it at all? This Christmas time how will you and I respond to Christ?
In light of His promise of peace and favour, who can you and I reach out to in these coming weeks?