A God With “Skin on Him”

QUITE A FEW YEARS AGO, while pastoring a church in Albuquerque, New Mexico, I passed another church on the way to mine and noticed the words on their sign out front:

“Does God seem far away?
Who do you think moved?”

Sometimes we truly do feel as if God is far, far away. It can seem He created this world and all of us—then walked off like some absentee landlord to let us fend for ourselves.

But is it possible that if God seems far away, He is not the one who moved? Is it possible that sometimes we feel that way because we are the ones who have drifted away from Him?

The picture I get in reading the Bible is not of a remote, distant God but of a Father who cares more about us than we may ever realize.

Perhaps you’ve heard the story by Christian author John Drescher about the frightened little boy who lay in his shadowy bedroom one night, trembling in terror as a thunderstorm raged just outside.

“Daddy,” he called out, please come here—I’m scared!”

“Son,” his father answered, “It’s OK—God loves you, and He’ll take care of you.”

“Yes, I know God loves me,” the boy replied. “But right now I need somebody with skin on `em.”

In just a few days now, we celebrate the birth of Jesus—and perhaps we’ll hear or read again those words in Matthew 1:23 in which Matthew quoted Isaiah’s prediction of Christ’s birth:

“‘Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,’ which is translated, ‘God with us.’” (NKJV).

God WITH us. God nearby. God close at hand. God who cares about us more than any of us as parents care about our own children.

Some of us may be blessed this Christmas to share it with those we love. But some may spend this Christmas alone, or nearly so. Yet not really. Not if we realize that if God seems far away, He isn’t the one who moved. Not if we realize that in Jesus, we were given a God with “skin on”—the very word incarnation being based on the word for flesh.

The message of Christmas is that God is “with us.” What’s also wonderful to realize is that on awakening the morning of December 26, we discover that He is with us all the other 364 days of the year as well.


2 responses to this post.

  1. Great post Ken!

    I encounter so many people who don’t understand the true meaning of Christmas. To them it is much easier to focus on all of the traditions and the material aspect of the season rather than attempting to grasp that Christmas is more than just celebrating Jesus’ birthday.

    This is your blog so I won’t say too much, nor do I need to, I think you’ve got it well covered!

    Take care and God bless!


  2. Thanks, Alex. You and Jeanna and Elijah have a great Christmas! And best wishes in your classwork.


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