Christmas is the season we celebrate for when Jesus came to this earth. It’s the time we set aside to recognize that because God so loved the world, He sent His only begotten Son.

God gave Jesus.

The best gift ever.

We know that Jesus’ mission didn’t just end with the manger scene, rather He came so that we might have life. He accomplished that goal by dying on the cross, which paid the price for our sin, as well as being resurrected from the dead on the third day.

Every aspect of Jesus’ life was vital to His mission.

Even though we have a holiday recognizing the event, the manger, in my opinion, often gets overlooked.

Have you ever stopped to think about what the manger represents within the bigger picture of Jesus’ mission? It wasn’t just a stepping stone on Jesus’ journey to the cross, rather, it was a demonstration of the fact that God wants to be with us.

All throughout Scripture there is this thread of God pursuing us in order that He might be with us.

God came to Adam and Eve after they had sinned. He was walking through the garden, as if to look for them (see Genesis 3:8). Even though I’m sure He fully knew exactly where they were.

God’s interaction with Israel throughout the Old Testament always involved God making a way for Him to be with His people.

Take for instance God’s instruction to Moses to build the tabernacle:

“Let them construct a sanctuary for Me, that I may dwell among them.” – Exodus 25:8

And time after time, even when His people turned their backs on Him, God pursued them with a relentless love.

We then jump to the end of the story and find yet again, God’s declaration to be with His people:

“Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God.” – Revelation 21:3 

Jesus’ coming wasn’t just to die, but rather fully, boldly declare: I want to be with you.

So as we celebrate this Christmas holiday, let us know and understand that God desires to be with us. Let us not take for granted that the God of the universe… the One who spoke and everything was… He wants to be with us.

He wants to be with you.

We may read that line and think “Oh, I’m not in a place right now for God to be with me. Why would He want to be with me?”

The fact that Jesus came, the Son of God, and was born in a manger shows that He’s not afraid to get dirty.

God wants to be with us. He wants to be with you. Open up your heart, and let Him in.

“Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel” (which means, God with us). – Matthew 1:23