E-lert

December 2013

Being grateful for with

With.

With is such an unassuming word. We often slide right over it when we read it or speak it. But it is one of the words I treasure most.

Having just spent Thanksgiving with loved ones, and looking forward to being with them even more during the Christmas season, I am grateful for the capacity and gift of being with them.

As we have navigated a very challenging year at Luther, in so many ways we have been able to do it with one another. As students, staff, faculty, alumni, donors, prayer partners and others who care about God's mission here, we have found ways to do difficult tasks with one another.

Sometimes in this world things happen to us, around us, in spite of us, nearby us or detached from us. But when we can truly join with others, life is deeper, richer and more fulfilling. Thank you for being with us.

With. It is a powerful word throughout Scripture. Think about these familiar passages:

"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God."

"My peace I leave with you."

"Jesus appointed twelve, whom he also called apostles, to be with him ..."

"I am with you always ..."

"... shall bear a son, and he shall be called Emmanuel, which means 'God with us.'"

As we complete this fall semester, and move into the Christmas season, may each of us know the power of that little word. May we truly be with one another. And, whatever challenges may come our way, may we remember the promise that in Jesus Christ, God is with us.

With. May this little word mark your life this season.

Rick