Our Emmanuel is Already Here

Read it! John 21

Early in the morning, Jesus stood on the shore, but the disciples did not realize that it was Jesus.


Think it through

Many of Jesus’s followers had a hard time recognizing him after the resurrection. Isn’t that weird?

Mary thought he was a gardener. The two disciples walking to Emmaus were kept from recognizing him until after he broke the bread. The seven disciples on the fishing boat didn’t know it was Him, even with his familiar request to throw their nets to the other side of the boat.

They couldn’t see that their Savior, Jesus, was right there with them!

Even though they couldn’t recognize him, Jesus certainly recognized them. He saw Mary’s mourning heart through her tears. He saw the travelers’ slow-to-believe hearts through their words. And through their restless action, he saw the disciples’ need of encouragement—Peter in particular.

Though we can’t see him, Jesus is always with us. He watches over us like a shepherd. He is in everything good and pure and lovely.

And through all that happens to us, He sees us our hearts and loves us.


Live it like you mean it

Do you ever feel like God is far away—like you’re alone in your grief, or confusion, or restlessness?

We can all feel that way sometimes. I once heard of a doubting girl who prayed, “Lord, make yourself real to me,” and thought she heard no answer. My heart breaks for her. Because he is real, and his answer is all around us.

This week, I’m challenging you (and myself) to practice an awareness of God-with-us. At all times, I want to fully understand I’m in the presence of my Jesus, my Emmanuel. When I’m home, I’m going to light a candle to remind me. When I’m out and about, I’m going to try to visualize him with me.

This is how I’m going to finish my series in John, clinging to the perspective that God is with me.

On that boat, John saw Jesus first. That’s the perspective of John that I want to keep.


Lift it up

Lord Jesus, let me be like John, who saw You when he was out on the boat. Let me be like Peter, who jumped in the water just to swim to You faster. Let me see You and feel You beside me every moment. I know You are there. You are Holy, Holy, Holy. And You are my friend. How I thank and praise You for that! Amen.


Tell Me About It

How are you going to keep an awareness of Jesus’ presence?

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