Does the name Emmanuel mean anything to you?

I have only ever met one person with the name Emmanuel, a French bloke who I studied with for a while. Point is, I don’t want to write about him, I want to share something with you this Christmas about one of the most mind-blowing things the bible has to say. (In my opinion anyway!)

Have you ever looked up into the sky on a starry night? Just for a moment, stopped and looked up and let your head be filled with the impossibilities of space and just how vast the universe is?

I often do it, I have a fire pit in my garden and many evenings each week I am out there burning wood and looking up transfixed on the night sky trying to use my night sky app to understand some of the star clusters and constellations.

The scale of space leaves me utterly amazed, the distance between planets, the size of our son and the seemingly never-ending universe just grips me in ways I can’t really articulate. Now here’s the thing.

Emmanuel literally means, ‘God with us.’ So, if we think for a moment about the God the bible speaks of, he called all things into being, he spoke a single word and life came into being, and he orchestrated the most elaborate universe of scale and wonder the human race will ever see. This same God, according to the bible, wants to know you and me.

Ok, mind blown!

Not only does he want to have a relationship with you, as a father, a friend, a brother and a captain, but he made all the components available for you to have this relationship!

The Christmas story can so quickly become lost in babies in manger’s, snow and donkeys, but the truth is, and ultimately all we need to know is, Emmanuel – God with us. 

When life does a number on you and you feel exhausted then you need to know, God can be with you. When you are tired and fed up, at the end and so desperate for some joy or peace in your life, you need to know that God can be with you. Not in some snow-covered Christmas card way, but a real way, a profound way that will keep you when your heart and mind falters. Jesus, God with us, is to me the most amazing and staggering thing.

The key here is you invite him in, God be with me. Jesus be with me and help me understand what it means to live a life that follows you. I did, and life has not always been easy, but what I can say is that I have been doing life with Emmanuel – God with me! 

Have an amazing Christmas, God bless from Nathan and the CVM team

Photo by Klemen Vrankar on Unsplash