This is how we know that we belong to the truth and how we set our hearts at rest in his presence:         I John 3:19

I saw a client the other day who has been having marriage problems. He related that he often did not know what to say to his wife who wanted him to be more emotionally present with her. He does not really understand the concept, having come from an abusive and rejecting family of origin.

As we just talked about his early years, he began to relate a story about his grandfather, who was the most important person in his life, and possibly the most accepting person in his early life. As we talked, he said that he began to see some things about his marriage, and what is important to his wife. “Family is important to her”, he said.

We had not said anything about his wife, but I wanted to model to him that just being present and sharing thoughts and feelings about important people in our life is presence. Just listening with interest and empathy is presence, and that is something we all need from one another.

I began to think about Jesus coming to earth to be present with us. This Christmas season, as we consider the gift of his presence with us, let’s remember that our presence with others is healing for the human spirit.

Prayer: Lord, give us patience to hear the needs of others, and the understanding that our presence can be healing, Amen.

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