God With Us

Annunciation,_Rome_-_Fra_Lippi

Today we celebrate the Solemnity of the Annunciation, when the angel Gabriel revealed to Mary that she had been chosen to be the mother of the Lord.  How many of us realize that the virgin birth had been prophesied by the prophet Isaiah?  The passage that provides the prophesy is today’s first reading.

The LORD spoke to Ahaz, saying:
Ask for a sign from the LORD, your God;
let it be deep as the nether world, or high as the sky!
But Ahaz answered,
“I will not ask! I will not tempt the LORD!”
Then Isaiah said:
Listen, O house of David!
Is it not enough for you to weary people,
must you also weary my God?
Therefore the Lord himself will give you this sign:
the virgin shall be with child, and bear a son,
and shall name him Emmanuel,
which means “God is with us!”

Do we live in the hope that God is with us, or do we know in our hearts that he is intimately involved in our lives?  There is a huge difference.  The Lord is not an occasional visitor, nor does he have a passing interest in us.  We are his beloved friends.  He participates in every breath we take but also allows us to make our choices, even bad ones. The Lord does not condemn us for our weaknesses, instead he resides within us to help us to change our lives and embrace his love.

God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that those who believe in him would not perish, but have eternal life.  He is God with us.

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