Earlier today I came across Arise Shine (Darkness like a shroud) by Graham Kendrick.

Darkness like a shroud covers the earth;
Evil like a cloud covers the people.
But the Lord will rise upon you,
And His glory will appear on you -
Nations will come to you light

Arise, shine, your light has come,
The glory of the Lord has risen on you!
Arise, shine, you light has come,
Jesus the Light of the world has come.

My mind went to Zechariah 8:20-23, in particular from verse 23.

"Let us go with you, because we have heard that God is with you."

In the big story of Israel we easily overlook Exodus 12:38 where we read 'Many other people went up with them'. No obvious detail provided as to who these were, but might have included those Egyptians who feared the word of the Lord (see Exodus 9:20; 10:7).

Pray that the people of God (as represented by the church, including me!) will be seen as a blessing and not despised (see Zechariah 8:13). That same verse reminds us 'Do not be afraid', a clear reference to Joshua 1:9; 10:25, the most repeated do not command in scripture.

The phrase 'we have heard that God is with you' from Zechariah 8:23 reminds me of Matthew 1:23; Isaiah 7:14 'they will call him Immanuel (which means "God with us")'.

In John 14:17 Jesus promises 'the Spirit lives with you and will be in you', which He repeats in John 14:23 'we will come to them and make our home with them'.

Which reminds me of the song I serve a living Saviour which includes the words 'You ask me how I know He lives, He lives within my heart'.

Do people recognise that God is with me?