It's not what someone does for us that matters most; it's the very fact that they are with us when we need them that's important.
In moments of struggle and suffering - and in times of celebration and joy - we want another alongside us to share our experience.
The overriding message of Christmas is that God has come to be with us. And God is with you now.next >
He was in the world, and the world came into being through him; yet the world did not know him. He came to what was his own, and his own people did not accept him. But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God.
John 1:10-13next >
"Give me a sign. Prove that you exist." When people pray this kind of prayer, they usually want something supernatural to happen. They're looking for a personal miracle as soon as possible, so they can be sure of God's presence in the world.
What they're missing is that everything in creation glows with God's presence; not only majestic mountains and sunsets, but even tiny bugs and blades of grass. Isn't every breath a kind of miracle? Besides, miracles happen in people's lives all the time: Enemies reconcile. Addicts recover. Love finds us.
The good news is that even when we can't see these things as signs of God's presence, they are there. We get second chances, and third, and hundredth chances to know God through the world God made. If you're waiting for a sign, don't give up. Look around. You'll find plenty.
Sarah Councell Turnernext >
Holy God, keep my eyes open to the signs of your presence all around. Keep my ears alert to the sound of your voice. Let me know you more and more. Amen.next >
Now go with the assurance that
God is present in you at your strongest and weakest.
God is present in all creation, including you.
God is present in every moment and in a single word.
God is present, recognized or not.
And God is present in the flesh – like our flesh – to bring us home.
Sarah Councell Turner
Sarah Councell Turner is an artist who lives in New Jersey with her husband, her mom and dad, and her dog. She is also a stepmother, but not a very wicked one.