“God has visited his people!” Luke 7:16b

A number of years ago we received a calendar from some missionary friends living in France. The December scripture was taken from Luke 7:16: “Dieu a visité son peuple.” I loved saying it (in my faulty French accent), and remember thinking how much that verse captured the essence of Christmas. God came to visit his people.

The gospel of Matthew begins and ends with the declaration that He is here. “[T]hey will call his name Immanuel—which means, ‘God with us’” (Matthew 1:23). “[S]urely I am with you always, to the very end of the age” (Matthew 28:20). This profound assertion meets one of man’s most basic needs — knowing we’re not alone in the universe. Christmas invites us to see that amid a world increasingly characterized by broken relationships and isolation, there remains a God who is near.

One of my favorite Christmas carols reminds me of the timelessness of inviting Him to visit His people:

Come Thou long-expected Jesus;
Born to set Thy people free;
From our fears and sins release us;
Let us find our rest in Thee.

We invite Him to come, but in reality, He never left. He’s still here.

What better time than Christmas to tell others about this divine visit? It’s the perfect time of year to invite the lonely, the weary, and those who are afraid to join in the celebration. Share the good news that His presence is the greatest present of all.

Jesus, thank you for coming to visit us. Thank you for never leaving. May we be aware of your presence this holiday season and have opportunity to invite others to join us in the celebration. Amen.

TAKE ACTION

Ask God to show you one specific person who needs to know and feel God’s presence this Christmas season.

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