That They Might Be With Him - Encouragement Café - January 3

That They Might Be With Him
by Ramona Davis

Jesus went up on a mountainside and called to Him those he wanted, and they came to Him. He appointed twelve designating them apostles that they might be with Him and that He might send them out to preach and to have authority to drive out demons.  Mark 3:13-15 NIV

The ornaments and lights are boxed away in the basement as Christmas fades into the New Year. The hustle and bustle of shopping, cooking, and family gatherings around the Christmas table are behind us and stored away in our memories.

Some see January as a let down to all the previous festivities, and have packed away the presence of Christ with the Nativity scene. If this is you, may I remind you that Christ came as Emmanuel, God with us. He desires that we be with Him.

There are many sermons, lectures, and books that teach us about God’s plans for us. They explain how He longs for us to be involved in bringing others into His kingdom.

There is an abundance of material explaining how we determine our Spiritual gifts and how to use those gifts in our ministries and everyday life that we may be more effective in our witness for Christ. I’m grateful for these and I’m especially grateful for God’s Word that directs us in His plans.

I want to be a part of His kingdom work!

However, those sweet words from the book of Mark, “that they might be with Him” are like a cool drink of water on a hot, thirsty day. They encourage me to focus on my relationship with Him, Emmanuel, God with me. It relieves my self-imposed pressure.

We have done a great disservice by not teaching more on this subject. Our “doing” for God tends to overshadow our “being” with Him.

The Creator of the Universe wants to be with us! Let that soak in for a minute.

Our relationship with Christ is the most important aspect of our lives.  What are some ways we might be with Him?

  • Make a commitment to read Scripture regularly. Don’t do this to check it off your “to do” list. Really read it and as my Pastor says, lay your life on it. Let it soak in and apply it to your life. Don’t focus so much on a reading plan, but focus on letting His Living Word transform you.
  • Make an appointment (and keep it) to spend quiet time with Him. Read a portion of Scripture, or a daily devotional and still yourself in His presence. Talk to Him and allow Him to speak to your heart. Journal your conversation if that helps you connect the dots in your relationship with Him.
  • Talk to Him throughout the day. Tell Him what thrills you and what disappoints you. Be honest, He already knows your thoughts and heart anyway. Ask for direction. Ask for forgiveness right away when you blow it. Ask Him to give you a keen awareness of His presence even while in the company of others.
  • Look for Him in your daily activities. He reveals Himself in the most unique ways, often in interruptions. Look for His character in those you come in contact.
  • Simply enjoy Him! Enjoy His beauty in His creative handiwork. Don’t rush through your day and life simply doing the next thing. Slow down. Eliminate the unnecessary to be with Him.

Choose one of the ways listed above and commit to put it into practice for 7 days. When we focusour attention on “being with Him”, “doing for Him” becomes more effortless, productive and effective.

Lord, I want to be with You. I want a deeper and closer relationship with You. Help me to focus on You throughout my day and be intentional to grow in You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

© 2019 by Ramona Davis.  All rights reserved.

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Originally published Wednesday, 03 January 2024.