“Lift up your voice with a shout, lift it up, do not be afraid; say to the towns of Judah, ‘Here is your God!'” (Isaiah 40:9)
Some time ago a chaplain at a public university heard one of the administrators saying, “No offense, but I think anyone who believes in God has a mental health problem. God has no place in a scientific institution such as a university.”
That administrator is not alone. An article in a church magazine reported that a group of students who were studying theology at a German university were convinced that “neither God nor the church were of much relevance today.” Even though they were baptized members of Lutheran and Reformed churches, they felt that God had become irrelevant.
Some of the people I know have come to the same conclusion: If there is a God, he is far away and no longer matters.
About 2,700 years ago God’s people in Jerusalem and Judah felt the same way. Many of their people had been taken into exile, and it seemed that the Lord had abandoned them. But God told his prophet Isaiah to remind them that he was with them every step of the way. Regardless of what anyone might think, God is here, and he is at work in our world still today. Some 700 years after Isaiah spoke, God proved his presence through the birth of his Son, the Lord Jesus. He “moved into the neighborhood” (John 1:14, The Message). Don’t think for a moment that God has become irrelevant. Our God is here!
Father in heaven, thank you for showing your presence through the coming of our Lord Jesus. Open our hearts to receive him as our Savior. Amen.