The snow had fallen all night and then all morning with big, fluffy flakes. Finally late this morning the sun made its presence known. As I sat at my kitchen table gazing out at the vast, glistening snow covered fields, with a pot of warm tea steeping close by, a candle softly adding a bit of warmth and glow, I was awed by the promise found in Isaiah 7:14 “the Lord himself will give you the sign. Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son and will call him Immanuel (which means ‘God is with us’).
God is with us…as I meditated on this one little line I felt the presence and comfort of the Holy Spirit. And as I was lost in the brilliance and splendor of the sun glistening on the snow like diamonds, I felt comforted.
But even as I sat in my warm, comfortable home, surrounded by the things I love I realized that of all the comforts I find in this world, the greatest comfort I can have is in the presence of Jesus Christ.
The prophet Isaiah described this presence as, “Immanuel, God with us.” Today, whenever I would think of this phrase, “God with us,” I was reminded that no matter what I’ve been through, or whatever trials may come my way in the future, or even the fact that I am alone for a time while my husband is away, I am not alone…God is with me!!
The very One who created the world, the One who holds the heavens in his hands, the One who establishes kingdoms and destroys armies…..He is in me and around me….He surrounds me with His protection, comfort and love. He is my shield, my fortress…He is my security, refuge and strength, He offers me His compassion, care, and deep abiding love. He is with me!!
And then an interesting thing happened….you’ve heard of the calm before the storm, well that is what happened here this morning. Suddenly a wind came up so strong that I could barely make out the neighbors house and for the rest of the day a blizzard raged across the prairie.
I live in the country and one of the ways we help supplement our heat is with an outdoor wood boiler….to make a long story short it sprung a leak and all the antifreeze drained out of it. I could no longer use it as my main heating source. Plus, every winter my husbands work takes him away for a couple of months and he left just this past week….so here I am alone, with a major problem and I have no idea how to fix it, but God is good, and I am blessed with awesome neighbors who came to give me a hand. After a couple of hours I was tucked safely back in my warm home.
Even through all this my mind went back to the book of Isaiah and the promise of “God with us”….I can find comfort in so many things, yet it is when the storms come I find the most precious treasure of all, “Immanuel, God with us.”
It was this text that the gospel writers later used to describe the birth of Jesus as this shout from God that “I am with you.”
Today may you be encouraged as I was that through Jesus, God is with you. He is with you always…and has promised to never leave you or forsake you- Heb 13:5, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”
He’ll never leave!
He’ll never forsake!
He says it more than once:
Deut 31:6, “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you.”
Deut 31:8, “The LORD Himself goes before you and will be with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”
I love God’s “never”!
May you hold His promise close to your heart today~God is with us!!!