(my contribution. to PCI's Tides #2)
READ: ISAIAH 7:13-17
13 Then Isaiah said, “Hear now, you house of David! Is it not enough to try the patience of humans? Will you try the patience of my God also? 14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you[c] a sign: The virgin[d] will conceive and give birth to a son, and[e] will call him Immanuel.[f] 15 He will be eating curds and honey when he knows enough to reject the wrong and choose the right, 16 for before the boy knows enough to reject the wrong and choose the right, the land of the two kings you dread will be laid waste. 17 The Lord will bring on you and on your people and on the house of your father a time unlike any since Ephraim broke away from Judah—he will bring the king of Assyria.”
REFLECT: This passage is the home of the first of only three mentions of my favourite word, maybe in the world - “Immanuel”.
What a word! “God with us.” Isaiah looks ahead to when a baby is born of a virgin. This child will be "the Word of God made flesh… among us”.
God with us. It is a fabulous theological concept but even more wonderful when we believe it as pragmatic reality.
God was for us but after sending 39 books, God showed us that BEING WITH was even better.
While on earth, God worked with people and was even for people BUT the majority of his time was just BEING WITH. 90% of God’s years on earth we know nothing about. BEING WITH was enough.
God’s model and call for mission is BEING WITH people, carrying to them his hope, compassion and grace.
RESPOND: We live in a world of lonely and isolated people. We are called to follow Jesus to make his word flesh. Spend some time listening to God to see who he wants you to be with today.