Now and Forever and Always

Luke 2:1-5 (NIV)

1 In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2 (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3 And everyone went to their own town to register.

 

4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child.

Lyrics

VERSE 1

This is not what I intended

These plans are not what I had seen

Coming true, then You descended

To come into a world and set us free

 

PRE-CHORUS 1

Though they say, it could never be done

Though they say, that I wasn’t the one

 

CHORUS

We’re on our track, I’m going back to the place where I am from

I’m not afraid, you make me brave as we march on toward the sun

Though the journey’s long and the road is tough, I will not lose my way

For You are with us, now and forever and always

 

VERSE 2

O the stars up above

They comfort me when darkness fills the night

I carry on for you my love

I know that my God’s strength will help me fight

 

PRE-CHORUS 2

One day at a time is all it takes

One day, I will enter Heaven’s gates

 

CHORUS

We’re on our track, I’m going back to the place where I am from

I’m not afraid, you make me brave as we march on toward the sun

Though the journey’s long and the road is tough, I will not lose my way

For You are with us, now and forever and always

 

BRIDGE

You’re my love, no matter what they say, you’re my love to cherish every day

You’re my love, no matter what they say, you’re my love, I will cherish every day

 

CHORUS [2X]

We’re on our track, I’m going back to the place where I am from

I’m not afraid, you make me brave as we march on toward the sun

Though the journey’s long and the road is tough, I will not lose my way

For You are with us, now and forever and always

Image by Braedon McLeod

Dive Deeper

 

Now… God is with us.  

          In this very moment and in the next, He is constant, and He is with us. Christ came and lived among His people, teaching, shepherding, and loving them. When Christ resurrected and ascended into Heaven, one may be tempted to think He is no longer with us, but this is not the case. Though Christ is not present in the flesh right now, scripture tells us He has sent another advocate for us. Christ told His disciples about this advocate in John 14:16-19 “ 17 The Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. 18 I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. 19 Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live.” Therefore, we have confidence in Christ because the Holy Spirit will not leave us, but He lives with us.

Forever… God will be with us. 

          In Verse 16 of John 14 Christ says, “16And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever—". Though the Holy Spirit is not seen, it does not mean He is not working within the world. Christ tells us though the Holy Spirit is not always recognized by the world, He is still very active and alive within it. Our knowledge of Christ does not end at the grave. Because of what Christ has done for us, we have been given the opportunity to know him now in this life and be with him forever in eternity. The great joy Christ gives is the reality of our eternal relationship with Christ, for it does not end when we mess up or sin, but continues granting us the purity to stand before God, which we could not attain on our own. Scripture tells us nothing can separate us from the love of God so we can expect forgiveness when we ask for it, and seek this purity through prayer. 

Always… God has been with us. 

          The God who led Joseph and Mary back to Bethlehem, is the same God who is with us today! The same God who spoke to Joseph and Mary is the same God who speaks to us today! The same God who extended His love, grace, and mercy to Joseph and Mary is the same God who extends His love, grace, and mercy today! Therefore, take heart in the midst of your battles and/or trials and know that God is with you Now and Forever and Always!

 

Questions for Reflection

  1. If God guided Joseph and Mary every step of the way back to Bethlehem, do you trust He is with you today to guide you on your journey? Is something standing between you and God? Pray and ask God to search your heart and show you areas in need of surrender. 

  2. What does it mean to you to know God is with you Now and Forever and Always? How does this change/impact the way you see God? How does this change/impact the way you view yourself?

  3. Who is God the Father? Who is Jesus Christ? Who is the Holy Spirit? Who is the Trinity?

Image by Daniel Newman

Hidden Features

Biblical Point of View:     

Joseph 

Musical Explanation: 

  • This song is sung from Joseph’s perspective as they are traveling                                                                   back to Bethlehem since a census is to be taken. 

  • The first verse explains Joseph’s confession of his thoughts.

        Though It may not have been the exact way he thought he would start a family, he could not have                                 asked for a more perfect child.  Joseph sings “Though I wasn’t the one” referring to the fact Mary                                 conceived Jesus with the Holy Spirit not Joseph.

  • The piano melody from Pull Me a Little Closer appears in the bridge as Joseph is singing about his love for His wife Mary. The bridge of this song is Joseph speaking to Mary, Jesus, and God all at the same time. 

  • As Joseph is singing, he makes a point to say “O the stars up above, they comfort me when darkness fills the night”. The stars are symbolic of Joseph praying to God who is beyond the stars in Heaven looking down on them as they travel. The stars therefore are not what is providing Joseph comfort but God, as He sees God in their beauty and knows He is above watching over them. 

  • Jesus, similar to Joseph, also describes the stars in Beyond the Stars to symbolize the Father in Heaven. 

  • In the pre-chorus 2 Joseph sings “One day, at a time is all it takes. One Day, I will enter Heaven’s gates”. Here Joseph is referencing the song One Day and speaking about the great reunion Christ sang about in One Day.  

 

How to sing:

This song is to be sung with a sense of adventure, specifically the beginning of a new adventure. In the beginning of an adventure there is a possible combination of two dominant states of being. First, one may have a pit in their stomach as they deeply sigh and realize the immensity of what is before them. On the contrary, one may have great excitement and see their trust in the Lord growing as they understand His promise to be present wherever you go. This song is also meant to be sung with a strong sense of Love just as Joseph loved the Lord and his wife. As you listen to/sing this song, envision yourself walking down a road on a new adventure; you take a moment to looking back in confidence remembering God’s faithfulness in where God has brought you from and then look ahead in eager expectation of where He will lead next.

Now and Forever and Always