Encouragement and Faith

Dad was a railroad man. When I was little, he was gone a lot. I loved my daddy. We were great buddies. We had secrets and did boy things together. I really missed Daddy when he went off to work on the railroad. But some of my most joyful memories are of Mama’s round little face lighting up with a happy shout, “Hey kids, look out the window! Daddy’s coming home.” We four kids exploded with joy.

We grownups are the same. It is painful to be left all alone, feeling unloved, unimportant. No wonder we get all excited over Easters and Christmases when we hear the resounding note, “Your Lord is coming to be near you.”

By the way, my dad did work at the railroad station. But it was actually only minutes away from our home, just across our tiny town. But to us kids, he seemed so far away.

Sometimes, we big kids get caught up in our busyness and feel like our Heavenly Father is really far away. But Christmas reminds us that he is even closer than just across town. He is Emmanuel, God with us. And, because of that first Christmas, we now know he not only came to be with us. He came to die for us.  So that we would be safe and at peace for eternity. He also promised to live in us through his Spirit and never leave us. He became our personal Emmanuel.