About three years ago, I had to take a precious girl to the local Department of Public Welfare office. Upon arriving, we were asked to take a number much like the DMV or being in line at the Deli. “Take your number and have a seat,” the sign read. Of course, we were not rebels, so we obliged. As I sat there though and heard number after number called, I thought, ” I am so glad that I am not a number to God, that I am his and he knows my name.”
Sitting there waiting to be called by our number made me feel small, insignificant, unworthy and not special. A number kept relational connections at bay and demonstrated routines instead. The non verbals were interpreted (whether intentional or not), “You are just another one. Let’s do what needs done and move forward, shall we.”
Maybe that is part of the job, maybe not. I wonder how many of us treat others like a number instead of a person with a name, heart, emotions, dreams, hurts or goals? Just another friend, acquaintance or fan, let’s move forward, shall we? God created us for relationship. To have a relationship with him and to have relationships with other people.
“He answered: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.” Luke 10:27
If we are to love God with all our heart, that means putting more into it than just routine. It takes two people to build a relationship and effort from both sides not just one.
If we are to love God with all our souls, that means nothing else reigns supreme above him.
If we are to love God with all our strength, then we need to exercise our spiritual muscles (pray, worship, give, rest, etc.) so that we have strength to expend.
If we are to love God with all our mind, then we need to store his Word in our mind so that it overflows into our thoughts and directs our actions.
“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.” Psalm 119:105
I am glad I am not just a number to God, but his daughter. He chose me.
“You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit–fruit that will last.” John 15:16
He knows my name and cares deeply about me.
“Just as the Father knows me, I know the Father…” John 10:15
“God cares for you…” 1 Peter 5:7
I am glad he remembers me and does not forget me. He is always near, never far. He does not turn his shoulder or walk away, but is my ever present help (Psalm 46:1). Heartaches are heavy, disappointments can be heavier, but he takes the weight off my shoulders and reminds me I am always his.
“…because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” Hebrews 13:5
When I enter heaven, my eternal destination, he will not say number 722 but rather, I envision that he will say, “Michelle, my servant, welcome home.”