God With Us

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Have you ever thought about how different your life is when you are alone, versus when you are connected deeply to others?

We all face difficult challenges, such as issues in marriage, relationships, parenting and work. That is a normal part of life. But when we are disconnected from the support and love of others, we lose energy, become discouraged, and tend to repeat old behaviors that don’t work. On the more positive side of life, we all have passions and dreams as well, such as a great family or a fulfilling career. Yet accomplishing those dreams will be accelerated or decelerated by whether we are working on them alone, or are accompanied by support.

Life is simply better when we are with others, and worse when we are isolated.

God designed us to be connected, and life breaks down when we are not.

Relationship is the very fuel of our existence and path. And this is not only true in our human connections, but with God Himself as well. The name given to Jesus in the Christmas story is wrapped up in this idea:

The virgin will conceive and give birth to a Son, and they will call Him ‘Immanuel’ (which means “God with us”). – Matthew 1:23

To be “with” means “on the same side.” It signifies that someone is present with you, has your back, is accompanying you, and wants to help you in every way. Jesus’ birth announcement provided another name for Him, to convey an idea of hope to us. It is that not only is God the Creator and the Sustainer of life, He is also present. He is deeply and intimately connected in relationship to you. He knows your struggles and your dreams, and walks with you through them.

Think how much better life is with the right safe people in your life. Then think how much better life is than this, when you allow yourself to experience the “with” of Jesus. This Christmas season, spend time with Him and ask Him to visit you and be with you in a way that brings you ever closer to Him. God bless you.

Original post by John Townsend for FaithGateway, 2014.

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Your Turn

Christmas, the time of family, and church, and friends, and celebrations, and togetherness, and community, can make those who feel alone feel even more profoundly alone. But, that is exactly what Jesus (Immanuel — God with us!) came to destroy — He came to heal the relationship with Him that we broke through our sin and to be with us! Pause daily through this season, as John suggests, — even right now — and ask Him to be with you in a deeper and closer way. Come join the conversation on our blog! We would love to hear from you! ~ Devotionals Daily

John Townsend

Dr. John Townsend is a psychologist, popular speaker, and cohost of the nationally broadcast New Life Live! radio program, and a cofounder of Cloud-Townsend clinic and Cloud-Townsend Resources. He is coauthor of the bestselling Boundaries and author of Boundaries with Teens and Hiding from Love.

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