Sitting here, I can see a card with one word, one name on it: ‘Immanuel’. Every weekend I let thoughts and ideas circle round my head, trying to find something to blog about. Something that will give you a wee bit of courage to carry on. Thinking back over this last year, I see many pieces of writing that encourage mindfulness, gratitude, positive thinking and the push to look beyond our selves, if we can. These are all laudable, and I have no doubt there will be many more posts like that in the days to come.

Over this past week, I have encountered people who are ‘holding on by their finger tips’. No amount of clever words or rousing speeches are going to help them. Even for me, there are many moments when I can’t stop the blackness taking over. You can try to hold it back with friends, self-talk, small beautiful joys in the world around us, but sometimes…

I have hinted at my faith before, but never want to come on too strong. So let me just tell you about the One person who gives me the strength, hope, light and love to cope in the darkest, most hopeless, most desperate times. When I am in the dirt, He’s there. When the tears rise, He’s there. When I’ve managed something I thought was beyond me, He’s there. I can’t see Him, hear Him or physically touch Him, but I believe in Him. He is my Immanuel. He’s yours too, if you want.

He came in weakness, poverty and vulnerability. He became like us. He was a real, tangible baby, and He became the only One who can hold back that darkness.

I’ll leave that thought with you to take or leave. I can only pray that this Christmas, you consider Him.

Nothing else will do.

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