An original Christmas song inspired by Isaiah 61 and Isaiah 9. May you know God with us this season, even in the midst of all the chaos happening across the world.

The Story behind: Immanuel (He is Called)

Hey church!

Hope you are all doing well.

Happy Christmas! Happy Christmas season.

This is truly a Christmas like no other at the moment, but I hope you are staying safe and I hope that this will encourage you today.

So last Sunday, 13th December at our Carol Service, I was pondering the passages that were being spoken about. They were Isaiah 61 and Isaiah 9.

Isaiah 61 is the passage that says:

“The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me,  because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”

Isaiah 9 is the passage that is often read at Christmas time that speaks about who Jesus is:

“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders.

And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,  Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”

As I sat in the service I just felt a song entering my heart. I even started to scribble down lyrics on the music in front me as inspiration came. Inspiritation from the joy of knowing Jesus and having been worshiping him during the service.

So, I decided to finish writing the song, with a little help from Cat, and I wanted to just share the heart behind the song because I feel like it has been an encouragement for me and I feel like it is a song for this particular Christmas season, when things are just not the way anyone planned nor predicted.

I feel like the year 2020 has been a year where the world has been forced to confront the reality of death and the reality of the darkness that we walk in daily. We’ve been forced to face the fragility of our worldly governments and the hopelessness of anything that isn’t founded in Jesus – who he is and the hope that he brings. This song is called Immanuel (He is Called) which means God with us. And that is what we can celebrate this year, in this crazy season. We can celebrate that he has been with us in this year, that he’s with us in the mess and he is the light shining in the darkness. He is with us even when we can’t feel him or are questioning why all this is happening?

And it does feel counter intuitive, to declare as a church, as individuals, that this is the year of his goodness and favour, and yet, that is what it is because we celebrate that he came down as a baby to be with us, to know the difficulties we face as human beings, but he also died as a man so that he could conquer death and the reality of the grave. That is why, even in the midst of covid chaos we can have hope and sing: “O death where is your victory? O death where is your sting?” because we have a king, a new born king who has defeated you.

And so I hope that this song will encourage you even if you feel like this year has not been the year of the Lord’s favour and you are struggling to see God’s goodness. But I know in my own life and through listening to others, that even though this year has been really tough in so many different ways, we can still declare that the Spirit of the Lord is here. He is at work and doing new things, even if they are things we weren’t entirely expecting. We can declare that death and the grave have been trampled beneath the feet of our king, Jesus Christ. We can declare who Jesus is, even in this season – our Wonderful Counsellor, our Prince of Peace and our Mighty God – and even more than that he is our Saviour who has defeated death which we are being asked to confront in a very real way this year.

And lastly, but the biggest comfort of all, He is Immanuel, God with us. We are not alone. He is right here, along side us in the storm and we can trust him because of who he is.

God bless you this Christmas Season and may you know his joy and peace in whatever you are facing.

Much love

Grace Bridgeman