God with us

Used throughout Scripture, but often overlooked, the word 'with' is short but powerful.

All through the Bible we see that God was with Abraham, with Moses, with David, with Esther, with Solomon and most importantly with Jesus. In our Christmas readings we will hear that Mary took comfort from knowing in her difficult circumstances that that God was with her.

The angel greeted Mary and said, "You are truly blessed! The Lord is with you." Luke 1.28

At this time of year we are reminded that Jesus was given the name Immanuel – meaning 'God with us'. God is with us and promises never to leave. But we are given a choice and a part to play in this amazing relationship - to live with God or without God (this is the basic premise of Psalm 1). How then do we live with God? How do we keep 'the Lord always before us'? Quaker author Thomas Kelly advises us to 'learn to live life on two levels' - on one level we go about our normal day (school runs / work meetings / shopping / eating), but on another level we keep an on-going awareness of the presence of God in everything we do. We practice the presence of God – as often as possible we turn our mind towards thoughts of God and his promise to be with us.

Immanuel – God with us. Happy Christmas!

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