December 15, 2022: God with Us

Reading: Matthew 1:18-25

Now the birth of Jesus the Messiah took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. Her husband Joseph, being a righteous man and unwilling to expose her to public disgrace, planned to dismiss her quietly. But just when he had resolved to do this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife, for the child conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” All this took place to fulfill what had been spoken by the Lord through the prophet: “Look, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel,” which means, “God is with us.” When Joseph awoke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him; he took her as his wife, but had no marital relations with her until she had borne a son; and he named him Jesus.



In ten days, it will be Christmas Day. This is a scripture lesson we hear every year.  Can it still be exciting year after year after year? Does this scripture hold anything new for us?  Does it still spark hope and joy in us as we hear it or read it?  Or are we too jaded from the day-to-day, and the world around us?  Are we bogged down with too many stresses and responsibilities?

Maybe that is why we need to hear these words every year.  Maybe that is why we need to celebrate Christmas at the end of the year.  We need to be reminded that Jesus did come to the earth so God could be with us.  Jesus came to save us from our sins.  That is something that should be celebrated every day not just at Christmas time.  It is something we should be reminded of time and time again, year after year after year.

May your Christmas celebrations be full of hope and joy.  When you hear this scripture in worship this coming week, may you be excited about the message it brings.

–Charlene Rineer



Gracious God thank you for sending Jesus to earth to be with us and to save us.  May we be joyful everyday because of that reality.  May our celebrations be reflections of that joy.