By Joyce Benjamin
This past Sunday was the beginning of Advent; a season to eagerly await Christmas, meant to reflect the way we eagerly wait for Christ. The word Emmanuel comes to mind. Emmanuel
means “God is with us,” and is also one of the many names of Jesus. While “God with us” was true physically at the first Christmas, indeed, the Holy Spirit is still with us here and now. It is a word that is not only reflective of the season but also of my semester.
“And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.” — John 1:14, ESV
As Capital Fellows, we spend hours serving at church and community, in class, at home, and in the workplace. Through it all, God is always with us. The monotony of daily life is where we come closest to Christ. Where we truly experience Emmanuel. When I make coffee in the mornings, Emmanuel. When I sit behind my computer at my internship, Emmanuel. When I feel I am not doing enough in my ministry, Emmanuel. Why then do I find it so easy to miss?
Since September, I have learned how to better study Scripture and how to interpret Biblical narrative. I have grown immensely in my knowledge of the Bible and of my finitude. God painted a picture of redemption from the fall of man to Christ and left us with the Bible to learn from. In these times of schooling, however, I can forget to view God as a personal God. I forget Emmanuel. He has not only laid out a story for us to interpret in the Bible but is currently writing the story of redemption through my life. While there is purpose in an academic study of God, it should never take away from how He is relational and cares deeply for me. God wants me to know Him on this personal level, and because of that, God is always with me.
When I was little, I would sit on the sofa in the lap of my dad. His arms wrapped around my body in a full embrace, his stubble scratching my forehead. When I opened my eyes, I could see the cotton threading of his shirt. Could it be that this is how close our heavenly father holds us daily? Could it be that we "miss" God in our daily lives because He is so close that we forget to see his face? I don’t want to look back on my time as a Capital Fellow and realize I sat in God’s arms and forgot to acknowledge He was the one holding me up. He was always, and is always, with me. Emmanuel.
As Christmas comes around the corner, let us find hope and encouragement in the monotony, in the waiting. God is with us.
Joyce Benjamin is a member of the Capital Fellows class of 2023-24. She is from College Station, TX, and is a graduate of Texas A&M University. This year, she is working on Capital Hill as an intern in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Pictures From The Week
Girls having a girls' moment!
Santa and "his son," Josh, made a special appearance at the youth ministry Christmas party.
Eliza's half-birthday celebration at Capital Commons!
Worship, led by Judah, in the stairwell at Capital Commons.
Know a Potential Capital Fellow?
If you know a college senior or recent graduate who should consider joining the Capital Fellows program in 2024-25, please encourage them to get in touch with us. The easiest way to express interest in the program is through our Contact Us Form. You can learn more about the program, including application deadlines, by visiting the Capital Fellows website.
About Capital Fellows. Capital Fellows is an advanced leadership and discipleship program for recent college graduates. Through graduate courses, a paid internship, one-on-one mentoring, and many leadership and community service opportunities, fellows develop and apply their gifts in real-world situations while learning to integrate a Christian worldview into all areas of life. Capital Fellows is a unique opportunity to live and work in the Washington DC area and to be an active member of a supportive community that seeks to serve the city with the love of Christ. It is also a unique opportunity to get hands-on experience in the workplace while deeply exploring God’s design for us as workers and contributors to human flourishing.
Pray for the Capital Fellows
Thank you for praying for the Capital Fellows each week!
This is the final week of the semester for Capital Fellows Season 17! They have done well with many new aspects of life. They have papers due this week for their graduate courses. By next weekend they'll be heading home. Please pray for them as they fight off procrastination, tiredness, and the excitement of taking a much-needed break.
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About The Fellows Initiative
Capital Fellows is part of a network of similar programs across the country. This network is called The Fellows Initiative. There are 34 Fellows programs in TFI, roughly 3,000 alumni living around the world, and more Fellows programs on the way.
If you know a church in the US or Canada that would benefit from joining TFI by launching a new Fellows program. Please contact TFI by visiting their website.
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