Immanuel is a wonderful name for our savior. It means God is with us. So much of our faith has to do with community.
God is triune – three, yet one. Which means that God by God’s very nature is a community. Each member of the trinity giving love and support to the other two – this endless cycle of praise and worship.
When God comes to Earth, He is born into a family. The first community that any of us know. Mary, Joseph and the baby, bound to each other. The three of them against the world – at least for a while.
When the baby is born in Bethlehem, he draws people to himself. Shepherds and wise men – strangers welcomed into his midst and made part of the we-were-there-we-saw-him-in-the-flesh community.
We aren’t meant to go it alone. We are made in God’s image – made for community. We are born to families (and if you’re anything like me, you adopt people along the way who become like family even though you weren’t born to each other). We are drawn to communities – maybe crafting communities, hopefully communities of faith, maybe communities centered around a certain band or author or movie or tv show.
We were made to be a “we.” And one of the things I love about this season (even as I find it exhausting) is the gathering together that is such a part of it. Parties and dinners and concerts and services. We gather together as we celebrate Immanuel – God with US. The “us” is important there.
This Advent, may you know God is with you, may you gather with others who know it, too. And may you celebrate.