Tuesday, December 05, 2006

God With Us

Isaiah 7:14 (NIV)
14 Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call Him Immanuel.

Matthew 1:22-23 (NIV)
22 All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: 23 The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel – which means, “God with us.”

Good morning!

Good news travels fast! I love getting letters and telephone calls from family and friends telling me about the arrival of the newest little ones in their life. “We have a new baby girl and she is a beauty! He’s a strapping young lad, and such a big boy! We are so very blessed.” There is nothing like the experience of standing outside the birthing room, cell phone in hand, waiting with great anticipation to share the good news of the birth of our grandbabies with family and friends.

Seven hundred years before the birth of Jesus Christ, the prophet Isaiah wrote about the coming of Immanuel – God with us. The Lord would be with us, not just in spirit, but in the flesh; walking and talking in human form. God could be seen and touched – fully divine yet fully human. This is one of the greatest mysteries of all time.

When King Uzziah died, Isaiah was given a vision of the Lord. He saw the awesome power and absolute holiness of God, and cried out in utter despair. Isaiah knew he was not worthy to be in the Lord’s holy presence, much less to speak of His greatness. One of the seraphs, guarding the throne of the Almighty, took a live coal from the altar and touched Isaiah’s lips, removing his guilt and atoning for Isaiah’s sin and human frailties. Then God asked Isaiah whom He should send to speak His Word. Isaiah offered up his life to be the Lord’s messenger.

The prophet Isaiah was willing to speak and write God’s Word as he received it, knowing his people would not listen or understand. God assured Isaiah that someday, some of the people would pay attention. Can you imagine the kind of joy Isaiah must have felt knowing that “God with us” would become a reality for all people? The greatest gift of all, the gift of life, was coming!

As we prepare to receive the greatest gift of all time into our hearts this Christmas, remember the words of the prophet Isaiah, and be joyful! Immanuel, God with us, is coming! He is coming in the flesh, for you and for me. He is our Good News, our gift of life, now and forevermore. Are you ready to receive Him?

Grace and peace,

Deb Spaulding

Pray for: joy to fill your heart, as you prepare to receive the greatest gift ever given – the gift of Immanuel – God with us. He is with you and He is with me, today, tomorrow and forever

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