A Thrill of Hope

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Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. Isaiah 7:14

I’m a huge fan of the holidays. The music. The lights. The food. There is so much fullness and joy to be experienced. But over the years, I’ve become more acquainted with pain and grief and the reality that this season is often full of aching, loneliness, and emptiness. It’s all around us, and it is unbearably heavy.

BUT, Immanuel. God with us.

I didn’t understand the depth of this name before, but in my loneliest times, what I wished for the most is for someone to be there with me. In my silent pain, I longed for someone to see and understand my aching and be with me. So now, ‘Immanuel’ means so much more. God became flesh to be with us. He came into our mess. He became light in our darkness. He is the hope that we all need. He is there.

The brightness of Christmas means something more to me now. The music, the lights, and the merriness remind me that Jesus is the bringer of all those things in my life but that He did so through pain, death, and incredible love.

Are you aching? Are you mourning? I pray that hope would fill you and comfort you this season.