The Gift That Changed Everything

Sunday, December 15, 2013

emmanuel god with us
The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Emmanuel—which means, God with us. Matthew 1:23

Twenty-seven years ago I took my wife's hand in mine, placed a ring on her finger and promised that from that moment on until the day I die, I would live with her and never leave her. My place became our place. My possessions became ours. I walked away from my life and stepped in to a new life with her. Twenty-seven years later I am proud to say I have never left her side. I can't be with her 24 hours a day, for which I'm sure she is grateful, but even when I am not physically present, I am with her through the bond of our relationship. I made a promise to her back then and I intend to keep that promise that she will never, ever be alone again.

That is the beauty of what Jesus did for us through his birth in a manger two-thousand years ago. His very name, Emmanuel, fulfills that very promise to us. When he came to earth, born of a virgin, he made the solemn vow that we would never, ever have to live life alone. From that moment forward, God promised to not just dwell among us, he promised to dwell with us. He doesn't come and go. He never takes a break and he never plans on leaving. He is here for good. He is always right beside us. I like how Dick Foth puts it when he says, "He left his place to come to my place, to take my place so that I could go to his place."

The gift God gave to you and me was himself and the promise of his eternal presence among us. His name is Immanuel - God With Us. That gift changed everything. This Christmas season, embrace the wonderful gift God has given you and allow Emmanuel to have his place right along side you. Experience the joy of knowing that you will never, ever have to walk alone. And as you celebrate his gift, give him the best gift you could give him--yourself. The gift of yourself will change everything!

Merry Christmas for Emmanuel has come!

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