“Look, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel, which means, God is with us.” – Matthew 1:23.
The name given to the virgin’s child contains the whole Gospel in just one word. It reveals the nature of our God. God is Emmanuel. God is with us.
God is not miles above us, aloof and uncontactable. God is not towering over us, wagging his finger disapprovingly. God is not hidden from us, waiting to catch us out. No. God is with us. Born among us, living among us, dying among us, rising among us. Completely and utterly committed to us, loving us from before we were born, loving us after we die. With us. Eternally.
How extraordinary is that?
God, you are with me, closer to me than I am to myself. Help me to remember that, and so to find the strength I need for today. Amen.
Show someone that you are with them, for them, on their side. However difficult that may be.
The Very Revd Nicholas Papadopulos, Dean of Salisbury.