One of the titles for Jesus is Immanuel, which means ‘God with us’ (Matthew 1:23). God, poor and broken Himself, walked with us, reaching into the lives of the hurting. Not only reaching but emphasizing and identifying with them (Matthew 25:31-46).
When I see someone hurting, this phrase goes through my mind, “Immanuel, which means God with us”. Why? When a Christian sits and empathizes with someone, helping them, in a sense, it’s God sitting there with them.
The Church—believers everywhere—are called the Body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12:27). I’m a part of it, and if Jesus is your Lord and Savior, you are too. That means when you help the hurting it’s part of the body of Christ with them.
Every believer is indwelt by God the Holy Spirit, the third Person of the Trinity. Paul tells the church in Corinth (1 Corinthians 6:19), “Don’t you know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you’ve received from God?”
Wherever you go, God’s with you. It makes you think about where you’re taking God and what are you doing with His temple.
When you, as part of the Body of Christ, indwelt by the Sovereign Lord, sit with someone who’s broken and hurting, something powerful is happening. God’s with them, physically in your touch and care as He works through your hands and words.
When we’re hurt, and I mean hurt bad, we ask “where’s God?” He’s there in the person helping you, who is reaching out to you. If you’re in a healthy church family, then you should see evidence of that a lot.
When we see suffering in the world and ask where’s God in this, He’s there in you, telling you to love your neighbor (Luke 10:25-37) so He can do part of His work through you. If you don’t, He’ll do it through someone else, and you’ll answer for it.
As one whose been under conviction when I ignored God’s call to help someone, I can tell you it’s very unpleasant. My heart was heavy because I had grieved the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 4:29-31).
Where’s God? With us, Immanuel.