The Peace of Advent: Day Three
“Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel, which means ‘God is with us.'”
– Matt. 1:23
Last night we got to see one of our favorite bands, Future of Forestry. It’s interesting to me how long they have been a part of our story, but they announced last night that this was their 7th year doing this, and it hit us that we were at their very first Advent tour. That first concert was a confirmation that we were not alone with how we processed Christmas and helped give a lot of language and significance to our own movement toward the birth of Christ.
Seeing them last night was great. It was refreshing and a reminder of why Advent is so powerful. They played one of my favorite songs, even though it isn’t found on their Advent albums and isn’t technically a Christmas song, but the lyrics and music speak to the truth of this season for me. Watch and listen.
If you leave I’ll still be close to you
When all your fears rain down
I’ll take you back a thousand times again
I’ll take you as my own
This is why Christ came, that despite the times we walk away, the times we leave again and again, the promise of Immanuel is that he truly is God With Us. “I’ll still be close to you” is God’s promise that I have been close despite the years where I have felt absent, and I am coming tangibly to change everything.
We read the angel’s statement in Matthew 1 and because of that prophesy that was first told in Isaiah 7, the course of history is completely changed. We are taken as his own. The lyrics continue:
You’re not alone
You’re now a part of me
You feel the cure
I’ll feel the toil it brought you
We get to the feel the depth and healing touch of grace that was put in motion back in the Garden of Eden and took on form in that stable of Bethlehem. God came to earth to take us as his own, to make us a part of him, but that it came at a price. We can feel that cure, experience his rescue, because he took the pain and toil that it cost him to have us back.
Advent is a story of rescue, and in these moments of reflection we can take time to find peace, to slow our breath down, and soak in the full breadth and width of the promises being fulfilled that fateful night where a virgin gave birth in a stable, and how all of history both past and future was completely changed because of it.