Was a theology word
That I wouldn’t understand
We say it in church
At Christmas
Because it sounds fancy
And we like fancy things
Or so I assumed

Literally means
God with us
And if God
Is with us
Then God
Is also
With me

Sweet baby Jesus
Away in a manger
Didn’t come
With privilege
Because he was God
As I had assumed
Jesus experienced
Human need

Man of sorrows
Acquainted with grief
Confronted demons
Battled his monsters
Descended to hell
He wept
And was rejected

Human grief
Human suffering
Human pain
Human hunger
Human feelings
Human sickness
Human laughter
Human God

When I descend
To the horror of hell
In pain and suffering
God is there
When the demons
Of addiction
Come to torture me
God is there

When I am alone
God is there
When I cry
Because of the pain
God is there
When I wonder why
God is there
Always there

When I curse at God
God hears
The heart of grief
Behind the words
And God
Is still there

(Image by Susan Craddock)

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