Sunday 18 December 2022
4th Sunday of Advent
Isaiah 7:10-14. Let the Lord enter; he is king of glory – Psalm 23(24):1-6. Romans 1:1-7. Matthew 1:18-24.
God is with us
The scene is simple and messy. It is also suffused with sacred intervention. A woman is with child. Her betrothed knows he is not the father. He wants to break things off. He is honourable and wishes to do so gently. God breaks into the scene. Through the ministrations of an angel. Maybe most importantly of all this man is told, ‘do not be afraid’. Do not be afraid, even though the child in your wife’s womb will be God breaking into history.
Today’s reading from Isaiah gives a sense of the longing for this presence. For a sign of something extraordinary. A sign that ‘God-is-with-us’. A sign that cannot remain understood as mere sign. This presence changes everything. As St Paul tells the Romans, it changes everything for the whole world. How does it change things for you?