Suggested Scripture Reading: Matthew 1:18-23; Matthew 28:18-19

Devotional Thoughts: For some of you, you’re not sure you can wait one more day, much less four! You’ve been busy counting down the days until Christmas, anticipating the celebration in store on that festive day when we remember the birth of God’s Son Jesus.

Just as many of us have been anticipating Christmas, the Jewish people of Jesus’ day had dreamed and anticipated the arrival of the promised Messiah. They had longed for His arrival for hundreds of years since the Fall, since Adam & Eve were tempted in the Garden by Satan, ate of the forbidden fruit and sin entered the world. Sin is what separates sinful people from a holy, righteous God and what Jesus came to save us from (Matthew 1:21).

The Jewish people asked themselves, who would God send to be the Messiah? They wondered, when would it happen? How would it happen? How would God fulfill His promise to save people from the curse of sin?

Matthew describes exactly how it happens in the first chapter of his gospel. God the Son comes down from His heavenly throne, clothed in flesh, humbling Himself to become one of us! As promised, Jesus is Emmanuel, meaning “God with us.” Fully God yet fully man – a mystery we cannot fully understand.

Jesus came down so that we could come to Him. Throughout His life, Jesus continually beckoned people to come to Him. He is still issuing the same invitation today. Have you come to Jesus in faith and accepted His gracious invitation of eternal life, of salvation?

We are not only called to come, we are commanded to go as God’s people Early on, Jesus sends out His disciples to be “salt & light,” to preach the good news. While, it may scare us to think of who and where and how we are to go for Him, He gave us a wonderful promise before He ascended into Heaven to be with God the Father. In Matthew 28:19, Jesus assures His disciples with these words, “And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age!”

Wow! Matthew ends where it began – with a promise from God to be with us!

A young boy was flying a kite on a breezy date at the beach. He let out more and more string as the wind flew the colorful kite higher and higher. It soared so high that the kite soon became hidden among the big, fluffy, white clouds. A man came by and asked the boy, “What are you doing holding on to that string?” The boy smiled and replied, “Sir, I am flying a kite!” The man looked up once, then again, and said, “I don’t see it up there.” The boy responded cheerfully and with great confidence, “Well, I know it’s up there because I can feel the tug on the string.”

The clouds of our life circumstances and daily challenges may obscure God’s presence in our lives but we can be sure He is there. God promises to be with us and He continually tugs at our heart, letting us know He is with us, with us always, to the very end! Let us take comfort. Comfort that He is with you in every situation and circumstance. Let us have courage! Courage to continue to heed Jesus’ call to come and command to go however and wherever that may be. Let us commit! Commit to be in His Word where the tug of His Spirit is best felt and understood. Let us come! Come to Him because He came so we could be with Him forever and ever. What a wonderful gift and a worthy Savior we worship. Merry Christmas!

Discussion Questions:

  1. What life circumstances or challenges are clouding your vision of God?
  2. How would your attitude and actions differ if you remembered “God is with you” – with you when you walk into room full of strangers or tackle a new project or while doing homework or feeling lonely and discouraged?
  3. How does the promise of God’s presence comfort and/or give you courage today? How will it cause you to praise and give Him thanks?

The mission of Cambridge Christian School is to glorify God in all that we do; to demonstrate excellence at every level of academic, athletic, and artistic involvement; to develop strength of character; and to serve the local and global community.