The Name "Emmanuel" means, we are told in today's Gospel, "God is with us." It is really amazing when you think about it. God decided that, in order to better understand us, He would "become like us in all things but sin". Imagine, for the first time, God would know what it it like to be cold, hungry, thirsty, lonely for human contact, and how human beings tried to relate to the Father. We sometimes think that Jesus, even though fully human, did not have to learn and grow, at time through mistakes. Certainly he stumbled and fell while learning to walk. Certainly he sometimes hit his thumb when driving a nail. Certainly he hurt when other children made fun of him of pulled pranks on him. And God got to know us as never before.
I think that is why God may be so patient with us; why Jesus left us a wonderful sacrament (Reconciliation) that would help us start over again and try to get our side of the relationship right. There is a popular saying that you never know someone until you walk a mile in his shoes. God did just that! and because of the Incarnation, the relationship between us has never been the same. And so, when we try and think about doing the will of God, we have a wonderful model in Jesus Himself. He was understandably looking for an easier way, but still did what the Father wanted. "Take this cross away from me, but not my will, but yours be done." We can do no better than to try and learn from Him. Jesus proved that a human being can do the will of the Father, even when difficult or seemingly impossible. And He tapped into the wonderful grace that the Father willingly bestowed and wished to bestow on us.In these final days before Christmas, I pray that we will try and do the same, as we strive to do the Father's will in our daily lives.