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.

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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 without him not one thing came into being. What has come into being in him was life, and the life was the light of all people.

The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.

John 1:1-5

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“The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.” What if that were the whole Christmas story? What if, at Christmas, we didn't hear anything about babies, donkeys, or angels, but just this one sentence? Would it be enough?

Maybe it's more than enough. Maybe all we really need to hear is “The light shines in the darkness.” Or maybe just “The light shines.”

Or just, “Light.”

This is one way of praying with Scripture: letting the Holy Spirit take you deep into the story; so deep that the story disappears and just one word remains. Then you experience the presence of God in a single word.

Sarah Councell Turner

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Holy God, you are from before time and forever. Let your light shine in my life. Let your Word live in my heart. Amen.

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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.


Jim Morgan

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