Does it feel like God is with you right now? Or do you feel like you’re all on your own?
It’s fair to wonder anytime we walk through a crisis, whether that is the Coronavirus Pandemic or any other change in life circumstances. We live in a culture that says “do this and you’ll get what you want, strive harder and you’ll reap the reward.” So when life doesn’t turn out as we expect, it is natural to feel like we did something wrong . . . that God has somehow abandoned us. But that’s not the way God works.
God is with us, even when we feel alone.
He is with us, even when we’re afraid.
As we turn to this familiar verse in Matthew 1:23, it might be easy to miss the presence of God before the Messiah was born.
“Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel, which means ‘God is with us.”Matthew 1:23 NLT
But on closer look, God was with Joseph long before Jesus came on the scene. The Holy Spirit was there.
As he considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream. “Joseph, son of David,” the angel said, “do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife. For the child within her was conceived by the Holy Spirit.Matthew 1:20 NLT
If you turn to a similar passage in Luke 1, you’ll find that the Lord was also with Mary at a time when she was equally afraid. The Greek word for afraid is phobeo, which is where we get our English word, phobia, which means “to put to flight, flee; struck with fear, alarm.” God was with Mary and Joseph, and yet they were still afraid.
Fear does not mean the absence of God. It is simply a reminder to look more closely for Him as we identify where He was, and is, and is to come in our story.
Heavenly Father, thank you for being with us no matter what. Thank You that You are with us when we are afraid. Thank You for meeting us right where we are and carrying us through the chaos, even when we feel all alone. Help us, Lord, to trust You more.In the Strong Name of Jesus, Amen
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