If you were to take off in your car to go somewhere you weren’t quite familiar with, would you do so based solely on your instincts? Or would you use a map or an app on your phone to help you plan your way? Most of us need directions. In order to keep us from wandering aimlessly in this world, the Lord God gives us direction. In order for us to understand His direction, we need to get to know Him through our quiet time with Him in prayer and meditating on His Word. This morning I read in a devotional, “Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a Son, and will call Him Immanuel.” (Is. 7:14)
This sign points us to the coming of Jesus Christ, the Lord and Savior for all people. Not only did the Lord say that He will come, but gave us insight long before His birth what can expect in our King. “‘Here is my servant, whom I uphold, my chosen one in whom I delight; I will put my Spirit on Him, and He will bring justice to the nations. He will not shout or cry out, or raise His voice in the streets. A bruised reed He will not break, and a smoldering wick He will not snuff out. In faithfulness He will bring forth justice; He will not falter or be discouraged till He establishes justice on earth. In His teaching the islands will put their hope.’ This is what God the Lord says—the Creator of the heavens, who stretches them out, who spreads out the earth with all that springs from it, who gives breath to its people, and life to those who walk on it: ‘I, the Lord, have called you in righteousness; I will take hold of your hand. I will keep you and will make you to be a covenant for the people and a light for the Gentiles, to open eyes that are blind, to free captives from prison and to release from the dungeon those who sit in darkness. I am the Lord; that is my name! I will not yield my glory to another or my praise to idols. See, the former things have taken place, and new things I declare; before they spring into being I announce them to you.’” (Is. 42:1-9)
The Lord sent Jesus to be a light for us all, to open our eyes to His righteousness and free us from the darkness of sin by faith in His son. “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16) What a loving God, that He would send His Son to be WITH us, which is what “Immanuel” means.
In quiet contemplation this morning, I am reminded that His Word gives us direction and insight into His character. If we don’t spend time with Him regularly, we will miss many of His directional signs for our lives. If we don’t have a relationship with Him, we won’t intimately know Him and may misunderstand directions we see. Let’s not miss what He has for us.
It’s easy to focus on one verse and be encouraged by His Word. It is encouraging to hear that the Lord has plans for us to prosper us and to give us hope. But if we stop with just that verse, we will miss what He wants us to know. “‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” (Jer. 29:11-13) He indeed has plans for us, but in order to find out what those plans are, we must first seek Him with all of our hearts. We must spend time with Him one-on-one, not just in bringing our list to ask Him what He can do for us. With open hearts, we need to come to Him prayerfully asking that He help us to desire what He wants. Jesus came to be “God with us”. Let’s be WITH Him, and be thankful!