' For to us a child is born, to us, a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.'' Isaiah 9:6
Behind all the "glam" displayed, the Holiday season can be a difficult time for many. Whether financially or emotionally, on many levels after the big gathering, when the light is finally off, face to face with our realities we can begin to feel great despair taking over. The moment of joy shared with our loved ones can quickly vanish and leave its place to worries and anxiety when Christmas is not experienced on a deeper level.
Christmas took a dramatic turn for me three years ago when I began to grieve the end of six years of marriage while expecting my first child, at the same time. As an immigrant, the Holidays seasons were always a sensitive time when I could not travel back to see my extended family. During my marriage, I was at least comforted to have a family of my own to celebrate with until that picture was no longer… Despite having my son and my sisters by my side, I was always haunted by the sad memories of the recent circumstances and had a hard time enjoying Christmas. As I began to pray and ask God: ‘’is this the end of my story?’’ I was brought to Isaiah 9 and wrote the song in two days.
As the story goes, the people of Israel were going through a difficult time. While crying out to God, they received the prophecy that a Savior was going to come to end their suffering. But many decades went by since that prophecy and still, there was no Savior yet. Furthermore to their dismay, the arrival of their ''Messiah'' did not happen in the ‘’ grandiose’’ way they thought it would, pushing some to even reject Christ as their Savior.
But for those who were in the wait, expecting the great news to come, that night when Christ was born they felt his presence and rushed down to worship Him. With the angels, they began to sing beautiful heavenly songs. That night their hope was re-blazed as they knew their lives would forever be changed!
‘’Emmanuel is here’’ is a comfort song, an invitation to worship and wait on the Lord with a grateful heart despite the unfortunate circumstances we may be experiencing. There is no perfect Christmas and we do not have to put up '' a masquerade'' but there in the waiting, we can still experience wholeness and restoration of our hope when we spend some time in God's presence. His peace and his joy that go beyond any circumstances can be found in His presence...
We are not alone in our journey, in the fight and will never be: God is forever with us!