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God With Us

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cozy christmas chalkboard 

Merry Christmas friend! Welcome to The Warming House! Come on in and join me for a tour of my home. As we wander, let’s chat a little about “God with us.” 

 

Christmas front door

 

David talked about it in Psalm 139:7-10. He prayed to God, “I can never be lost to your Spirit! I can never get away from my God! If I go up to heaven, you are there; if I go down to the place of the dead, you are there. If I ride the morning winds to the farthest oceans, even there your hand will guide me, your strength will support me.”

God is omnipresent. He is uncontainable and everywhere at all times.

  

Christmas wreath

 

God spoke about it to Joshua as he prepared his army to enter and conquer the Promised Land. “Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

 

Christmas chair

  

Christmas chair

 

basket of fresh evergreens hanging on chair

 

Joseph experienced it in prison. “But the Lord was with Joseph and extended kindness to him . . .”

God promised it to the Israelite nation through the prophet Isaiah.

So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Isaiah 41:10

God’s presence with us . . .

 

dog at front door, Christmas

 

 

glowing candle 

  

fresh evergreen sprig

 

In the New Testament, John wrote about it in his gospel, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being.” 

“And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (John 1:1-3, 14) 

Matthew 1:23 reminds us of God’s promise of it many years before the birth of Christ. “Behold, the virgin shall be with child and shall bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,” which translated means, “God with us.”

 

Christmas chalkboard  

The entire Old Testament points to the coming Messiah. The gospels reveal the manifestation of Christ – God himself with us.

Jesus abandoned the perfection of heaven to live alongside messy, broken, damaged, imperfect, confused, and sin-filled humans.

God the Son . . . the One whose hands shaped the sun, moon, stars, and earth . . . the One who breathed life into every creature . . . the One who formed man in his image . . . wrapped himself in flesh and descended to earth to make his home among us. 

Ephesians 1:9-10 reveals “God with us” as the plan from the very beginning – even before the earth was formed. (Ephesians 1:4; Ephesians 1:9-10) 

God’s presence among us . . .

 

bakers rack decorated for Christmas

 

annalee figures

 

After Christ’s death and resurrection, “God with us” became more clear. For those who put their confidence and affections in Christ entrusting him with their whole lives, there is God’s presence within. Indwelling believers. Immediately. Intimately. Securely. Permanently. (Ephesians 1:13-14)

And Jesus himself promised . . . “I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”

 

snowballs in basket

 

lighted snowballs in basket

 

As I recently studied Ephesians 3, the words jumped out in my heart and mind. 

For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name, that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; and that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God.

“So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith” is so much more than the indwelling of his Holy Spirit at the moment of faith. 

These 10 words express the deepest longings in the heart of our Savior. Here, “hearts” means “whole personalities.” “Dwell” means to “be at home in.” Jesus’ desire is to make his home at the very center of believers’ lives where he is the most influential factor in shaping hearts, minds, and lives.

Jesus was born in a manger so he could be born in our hearts.

He made his home on earth so he could make his home in us.

God’s presence within us . . .

 

Cozy room with Christmas tree

 

Christmas tree by fireplace

 

Have you allowed Jesus to make his home at the center of your being . . . at the center of your life? Or are you a person who makes a point to walk by the manger each Christmas to give the baby a cursory glance then abandon him the rest of the year? Do you sneak by the manger hoping he won’t notice you because of the mistakes you’ve made?

Remember, Jesus abandoned the perfection of heaven to live inside messy, broken, damaged, imperfect, confused, and sin-filled humans. That means you and me.

He is worthy of daily adoration. He is there for you to enjoy – and his presence delighted in – all year long. 

Christ came to make his home in you no matter who you are or what you’ve done. This Christmas, I pray you will linger at the manger. In his presence, I hope you will comprehend the magnitude of his love and be filled up with the fullness of God within – and that you will abide in him as he abides in you. 

Before you go, listen to this artistic arrangement of “O Come Emmanuel” by the son of a family friend. He’s a senior in high school and has won awards for his musical talents. You can download it on I-tunes.

 

Quinn

 

Merry Christmas to you and yours!

Lisa~

 


 

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