Tuesday, April 15, 2008

The Bethany Bullet-Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Read John 10:1-10

There are a few things that are absolutely universal. 99% of us have at some point had someone call us by our full name. “John/Jane J. Doe” and seldom has the experience proven enjoyable. Usually when my full name was strung together as a child it meant I was in danger of being strung up. It didn’t matter if it was my mother’s or father’s voice at the end of the words it meant that something was soon to be at the end of me, if you get my point.

Mary had come to the garden early Easter Sunday. In her panic, sorrow and fear she even fails to recognize Jesus when He greets her, “Why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?” Not until Jesus calls her name, “Mary” does she recognize him.

Now the Scripture does not give us intonation, voice inflection or anything like that. All it provides are the words. Did Jesus’ voice have a scolding edge to it, “Mary, why didn’t you believe me?” Did His voice have a frustrated sigh, “Mary, I thought you’d expect me.” Was it filled with utter compassion, “Mary, you can quit crying. I’m alive.” I do not know.

Perhaps Mary’s response can give us some insight. She throws her arms open and embraces him.

This is not the only one of His flock whom God called by name! The Good Shepherd knows His sheep and He calls them by name. God calls you by name!

Names are intimate. If you call me Kev-O, rev-kev, pk, or even Pastor Kritzer we’re on some form of personal connection. If you call me Mr. Key-von CA-r-IT-sir you’re a salesman and I’m hanging up. When Moses went to the Israelites in Egypt he asked God, “What is Your name?” God shared that intimate detail, “Yahweh—I am who I am.”

Out of the billions of people on earth, out of all who have ever walked it, God knows and calls you by name.

In a world of competing voices, from the time the alarm goes off to the time the head hits the pillow we have so many voices calling our name:
  • Work...Home...Community
  • Church...Kids...Folks
  • Friends...Neighbors...Employees
  • Employer...Customers...Clients
  • Email...Voicemail...Text message
There is no shortage of voices calling our name. Many times it is to fear and doubt, just like Mary in the graveyard. Many times it is to temptation coaxing us to wander away from the safety of the pen and the fold.

In these simple words Jesus invites us to tune our ear to hear Him call us by name.


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