December from the Pastor

Faster than ever it seems to me the Advent Season is upon us. For some that means shopping and 24 hour Christmas music on the radio. But not to be missed of course is the whole reason for the season – the coming of Jesus our Immanuel. We know Immanuel as one of the names associated with the birth of the Christ-child but it is not just one of many names – it is central to the very character of God.
A man stood on a mountain alone and was told by God that there was a group of people who needed deliverance, but how could he (Moses) possibly accomplish this? The answer – “I will be with you.” No matter the challenge, no matter how dire it looked, the promise of God’s presence meant the impossible was going to be possible. And the promise of the new Messiah, the Christ, was that in Him we have Immanu-El “God with us.”
Our God is not satisfied to sit in the press box of the game of life, separate from us. God has from the very beginning desired to have a close relationship with His creation. And Immanuel is the great embodiment of God’s desire to love us and be with us. Praise be to God who loves us!
The problem this advent season is that there are so many people around our communities and world who are lonely and hopeless. For them the world is uncaring and hostile. The word of Immanuel is for them. God desires for every person in the world to know Him and to experience His presence. Let us have the boldness in the Holy Spirit this holiday season to speak the words of Hope to the hopeless – God is with us and God loves us so much he gave the greatest Christmas present ever, his Son, the Messiah – Jesus our Immanuel.
We must also let our Immanuel inform how we live. Let us no longer say that the mission he has given us is impossible. Let us never think we are doing this all alone. God is with us and God is for us. Let the joy of His presence restore you hope and confidence that what God has called you to do in His Kingdom, He will also give you the power to do, because as Jesus tells us: “lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”
Pastor Nick

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