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“Come, O come, Emmanuel …”

One of the earliest books (outside of the Bible) to influence my spiritual development was Max Lucado’s “God Came Near.”  For me, it was God in technicolor.  It captured beautifully the meaning of “Emmanuel” — God with us.

When Jesus arrived in Bethlehem, God was in the manger.  He was not a pillar of fire; he was a baby wrapped in swaddling clothes.  His presence filled the barn.

When Jesus interacted with the outcasts of society, God was with them.

When Jesus gave sight to the blind, God was there.

In our moments of uncertainty or loneliness or grief, we call out to a Savior who is Emmanuel still — God with us.

One word with so much significance.  One word with so much hope.