One of the greatest blessings of Christmas is contained in the name given to Jesus (thus fulfilling Isaiah’s prophecy) that ‘“The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”).’ (Matt 1:23) Jesus is God’s sign to us that He is with us and that He is for us. Moreover, we now have His permanent presence through His Spirit who dwells in us. (Rom 8:11) Because of this, we don’t have to live life under our own steam, but can be helped, encouraged and blessed by the fact we are never alone.

‘God with us’ is one of those fundamental truths which has the power to shape us and change how we view our daily lives. Children can often feel very insecure when they are first left with people other than parents and need the constant reassurance that their parents love them and will always return to them. God gives us the constant reassurance of His presence: ‘Never will I leave you, never will I forsake you.’ (Heb 13:5) We can be sure of His unfailing love and presence at all times.