The Ultimate Gift – Day One

pic of jesus

The Promise of His Presence – Isaiah 9:6-7

I love this time of year… the songs, twinkling lights, wonderful smell of Noble trees, stockings, the mounds of wrapping paper strewn about the floor on Christmas morning and family gatherings. There is something different about Christmas that touches a place within my soul. My thoughts turn to home, the beautiful gift of my family and of course Jesus.

And yet, Facebook and Twitter feeds, the news and conversations with friends and family are dominated by a lack of peace on earth. Fears of masked men and women shouting praise to God while doing the unspeakable, whispers of presidential treason, and of course the end times predictions swirl in our ears and dance in front of our eyes. While we must be informed, frankly, I’ve had my fill.

Have you felt it too? Can any one of you by worrying add a single minute to our lives? (Matthew 6:27) The question is will we really allow ourselves to be blinded, distracted, or traumatized into forgetting the meaning of the season? Will we allow our thoughts to be dominated by the presence of evil among us or God with us? Jesus is the answer to what this world needs. We must choose to focus on Jesus. He REIGNS. His plan for each of us will PREVAIL. He is the ALPHA and the OMEGA the BEGINNING and the END. We are living on his timeline…

Which is why…

No season has ever passed me by without a walk late Christmas Eve. To me there is no night more precious, peaceful or still. It’s a time to reflect and to look ahead. A time to be grateful and hopeful. A time to think about and cherish a silent night when Holy became human… It’s a night to ponder the words of a prophet proclaimed to a people in peril, walking in darkness and in need of hope…

“For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government and peace There will be no end, Upon the throne of David and over His kingdom, To order it and establish it with judgment and justice From that time forward, even forever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.”
(Isaiah 9:6–7, NKJV)

From childhood this precious proclamation has spoken to my heart offering hope and providing a sense of safety and comfort. Each “throne name” of Jesus offers the promise of an intimate relationship with a personal and powerful King who will rule and reign over a government bathed in love.

When I was a young child Isaiah’s words a child is born leapt from the pages of the Bible as a flesh and blood example. The little church we attended hosted a living nativity… not just Mary and Joseph or the wise men… but ALL of Bethlehem. We traveled from room to room at the church each with its own scene of a chaotic city full of people. Somewhere along the way we ran into Joseph looking for a place for his family to stay. Finally we would find our way outside, to a stable where little baby Jesus lay in Mary’s arms. I could relate to Jesus, the little child born to us. He was little like me. He had a mommy just like I did. He was approachable, familiar, and even safe.

Unto us a child is born is the promise of a relatable and approachable Savior. Holy and humanity would share life. All we experience would be his experience―our joy, pain, fear, excitement, loss, and love. A child was born to us because he is for us ALL… inclusive not exclusive.

Unto us a child is born is the promise of his presence. As a result of the birth of the child God with us is now our present reality.

““The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel”—which means, “God with us.”” (Matthew 1:23, NIV84)

God’s presence is always with us in good news and bad, in terror and triumph, in love and loss. Presence is personal. His passion for you is the purpose for his presence with you. I pray you have a fresh revelation of the personal power of his presence with you! May you be flooded with thoughts of the intimate relationship that flows from a child born to you in order to be present with you… in every moment of your life and into eternity.

No matter what you hear, what you see, or what you feel, God is present with you. I challenge you to intentionally turn your thoughts to him. Sit with him, share with him, lean on him, and most of all love him.

For unto you the child was born…so that you would know you never face life alone.

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