The “presence” of a person represents that person’s countenance, their actual appearance, their ‘face.’
“The word was made flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.” (John 1:14)
Jesus said “( I pray) that they may all be one, as You, Father, are in Me and I in You, that they also may be one in Us…that the world may believe that You sent Me. (John 1:21)
We come to understand that when scripture says “His Name shall be called ‘Emmanuel:” God with us:” it is to be taken literally. God Himself came to earth in the form of a human baby born of a woman but fully and 100% God …for Jesus said “I am in You and You are in Me”.
If this is all that is ever said and understood by the human heart it would surely be measured as enough to live on for all eternity! It may truly take the human heart the fullness of eternity to comprehend those words!
In this season of winter cold, blowing winds and the emerging forecasts of snow and ice, we celebrate the birth of this “God-man”, Jesus Christ, “Emmanuel”, “God with us.” Even though the very date of the western Christmas holiday does not actually coincide with the real date of Christ’s birth, it is interesting to me to compare the atmosphere of this celebration with the spiritual atmosphere that reigned at the true time of his birth.
The coldness of our western weather, the icy winds and the chill in the air symbolize, to me, the manner in which this amazing God-child was received by the hearts of men, even those hearts of his own people. These blinded men and women, blinded by the flashy spirit of the presents that the world has to offer turned their backs upon the greatest gift ever given: the Gift of His Presence!
“O Christmas Tree! O Christmas Tree! How lovely are your branches!”
For the blinded hearts of many men, the focus is certainly upon the Christmas tree because it shelters the Christmas Presents! Gifts are given, gifts are received; from parents, grandparents, sisters, brothers, and friends. From cradle to grave there is this holiday known as Christmas which is ushered in by mobs of (sometimes) unruly shoppers running to and fro in search of that one thing: those Ultimate Christmas Presents!
From the fish in the basket
To life from the grave.
From the Presents He gave us
To the Presence He brought
He was lowly before us
He lived what He taught,
The truth that we needed,
But feared from the start
His Presence, “God with us”
Still changes the heart.
John 3:16 says that God “so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son”. This means that God meant for His Son to be “with” us…to mingle and mix with us..not simply to be a far away entity that was strange and unapproachable.
There is no gift, there is no amount of money, and there is nothing in Heaven or on Earth that can ever compare to the gift of His Coming. His Presence is the very Person of God Himself!
In the Light of Christ’s “Christmas Presence” all other “presents” dim and fade like a headlight in heavy fog.
His Light continues to shine through the years of our lives! It shines on the day of our birth and it will shine when we are no more.
It is the light of His Presence. It is Emmanuel.
The Greatest Gift.
God with us.
You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
Pastor Sondra Stallman
Sounds of Heaven Ministries%%detect_both%%