“Behold, the virgin shall be with child and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel, which means God is with us.”
Emmanuel, God-with-us, the greatest form of love and compassion of the Father in heaven. When God the Father decided to send his son on earth as Emmanuel, his presence meant everything to us like the Dad was to the little girl in the anecdote.
God with us! Now, how about that? God who is our Creator, Master, and Sustain-er is with us. God who is holy, omnipotent, everlasting, all-powerful, all-knowing, and just is with us! God who is love, joy, peace, truth, mercy, and hope is with us. He has chosen to be with us.
He is here with the rich and the poor. He is here with the young and old. He is with us in our strengths and weaknesses. He is here with us in good times and hard times of loss, anger, worry, fear, frustration, and confusion. He is here with us when we are lonely. He is here with us in our illness and in our medical procedures.
Sisters and brothers, as we march forward with our Advent journey, let us continue reflecting the meaning of a God who pitched His tent amidst us, a God who mixes with us, a God who chose to suffer with us. What does it mean to us? How do we want to respond to His love and compassion? Perhaps our best Advent prayer could be “Emmanuel, be with us, be with our families, be in our situations, and be in our relationships.”
About Father Jilson Tom, C.S.C.
Father Jilson Tom, C.S.C. is from the Northeast India Province of Holy Cross. A native of Kerala, Father Jilson has been serving in a parish and school ministry since his ordination twelve years ago. He joins the Family Rosary team as an Assistant, while he works to study Pastoral Counseling in the Boston area. With a personal devotion to Mother Mary, Father Jilson is thrilled to be working to enhance family prayer through the Rosary. And if you ever need a listening ear or want to play a board game, Father Jilson’s your guy!