Garry spoke tonight from Matt 1:18-25, reminding us of the name given to Jesus, ‘Emmanuel’ meaning ‘God with us.’ We might say that this is obvious; Ps 139:7-12 makes it plain that we cannot escape from God’s presence anywhere, since He is omnipresent! But the presence of God with us possible since Jesus took on human flesh is different. Over recent years we have become familiar with Zoom, WhatsApp video calls and Face Time, all of which enable us to see someone whilst talking to them, which is a great help in communication. You can go further than this with telepresence (a set of technologies which allow a person to move as if they were actually present in a situation, such as is used in robotics) and with haptic technology where you can wear sensors and actually feel the bumps and shakes of a car in racing games, for example.

John 1:14 reminds us that the Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us. He moved into our neighbourhood, so to speak, and Jesus (God in human form) experienced all we feel – human emotions such as joy, sadness, betrayal and grief. He lost his earthly father, Joseph, his cousin John and his friend, Lazarus. He experienced an agonising death for us. We can never say that Jesus does not know what it is to be human. God with us knows, feels, and shares in every aspect of our lives because He is truly God with us everywhere and for all time.