God is waiting for a meet-up with us. It does not matter if I’m happy or sad. I can be peaceful or in turmoil. Christ is there through it all, whether I acknowledge Him or not. He beckons me to meet up with Him.
22 So all this was done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the Lord through the prophet, saying: 23 “Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,” which is translated, “God with us.” [Matthew 1:22-23]*
So you may think Milly is getting into the Advent spirit. Well… that isn’t how this started. The Holy Spirit drew me to this verse about the birth of the Son of God. At first, it made little sense to me. I was looking for something about God meeting us or being with us always. There were only a few scriptures that seemed to match up to what I was feeling. One reason my post is late this week was my questioning of God.
“Really Lord, is this where I start? With a traditional Christmas verse?” My soul would not let go of the verse as I continued to search the scriptures for something else. It was like when a toddler grasps that piece of candy in his hand that mama wants to take away. My soul was stubborn! I could not pry that verse away from its grasp.
I mashed up some words on my screen. What a mess! I gave up and went to bed. Thursday, I pondered where God wanted me to go with the post. I asked Him how this fit what I saw on Monday. Then the connections started to form sparking understanding. I’ll start at the beginning.
It began with a Funeral Mass on Monday. A member of our family passed away last week. The Mass began with the priest in front of the altar instead of the back of the church. The casket is bare and waiting at the entrance to the Church.
I watched the altar server with the crucifix lead the priests down the main aisle to meet our loved one. What I saw with my eyes was the priest moving toward my loved one. In my mind’s eye, I saw something different. He meets us. The reality of Christ meeting us to heal our brokenness infused my soul. He meets us where we are.
It was a beautiful, poignant service. But my mind remained on the thoughts of how God in three forms meets us throughout the cycle of life. For me right now, God meets me when I need a father’s guidance. Jesus meets me when I need salvation, a brother, or a friend. The Holy Spirit meets me with wisdom, grace, and comfort.
Sometimes God meets us with guidance and other times with a miracle. There are times God has walked with me and I didn’t realize it until years later. I treasure it when, like Monday morning, I know He is near, and I know He with me always.
My ‘Aha’ moment was when I reread the verse with a prayer. “Holy Spirit show me what I’m missing…”
I reread the passage getting stuck on these words: “and they shall call His name Immanuel,” which is translated, “God with us.” “ Here at His birth, He is called Immanuel, God with us. But wait there is one more thread to tie this together! In the last two verses of Matthew the Lord commissions his disciples:
19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen. [Matthew 28:19-20]
At birth, He is called Immanuel; ‘God with us.’ He joins us in our day-to-day lives. He teaches, loves and heals those who meet up with him. After He rose from the dead, He commanded his followers to proclaim His word, baptize, and teach the world. Then He made a promise. “I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
I find He meets me where I am: a glowing bride; a brokenhearted sister; the birth of a son; a child sorry for her sins; a mother in prayer; a rebellious sinner; a writer… Wherever I am in my life, it is always better when I meet-up with my Savior and Lord.
Watching the priest greet the casket containing my loved one, I knew my loved one was meeting up with Jesus in a very real way. Someday I will make that journey. My prayer is I will not wander away from my Lord but make it to the ultimate meet-up: Meeting Him for eternity.
Meet the Lord where you are today. He is waiting for a meet-up with you.
Note: All references are from the New King James Version.
*Isaiah 7:14 prophesies He will be called Immanuel.