Jesus Is No Name-Dropper

I don’t know about you, but sometimes my memory for names can’t be called “memory” at all. “Forgetfulness” would be more accurate. On more than one occasion, for example, I’ve come around the corner of an aisle in a grocery store and heard someone call me by name.
I knew that person.
I knew I knew that person.
That person knew I knew them.
But I could not recall their name at that moment to save my life.
The explanation is one I understand: I was totally pre-occupied with my own thoughts, that had nothing to do with shopping, while simultaneously trying to remember all of the things I needed to buy. Had I seen the person from a distance it would have given my brain time to remind me of their name.
Or, that’s my excuse.
But I know it’s not just me. I’ve also been on the receiving end of “name non-memory.” I’ve said hello to someone and the look on their face tells me all I need to know. They can’t remember my name to save their life. I understand. Been there and not remembered that.
So how amazing is it that Jesus knows all of his sheep by name?
Totally astonishing.
Just think how many sheep Jesus actually has throughout the whole wide world, and has had across 2,000 years. Look at how many sheep he has a St. Anne’s. Yet, Jesus knows us all by name.
But he also knows more than that. Jesus is aware of all that we have been, all that we are, and all that we can be—if we follow our Good Shepherd.
Jesus knows when we need to lie down in green pastures. And when we feel, in our soul, the holy spirit of Jesus guiding us to a restfulness that feels like a green pasture it is more than okay for us to do just that—to stop being so busy, physically and mentally, and chill out in the abundance of the green pasture he has led us to.
Likewise, when we feel Jesus lead us beside still waters there is a reason for it. Pause. Refresh. Rest. Drink in the feeling of peacefulness reflected toward our soul by those still waters.
We mustn’t feel like we have to keep pushing ourselves and going and going and going. If we do, we run the risk of pushing ourselves beyond Jesus. We keep going and going and going past Jesus, like a sheep going beyond its shepherd.
Then we get lost and, let me tell you, life’s “wolves” love it when that happens.
Whenever Jesus seeks to revive our soul, there is a very good reason and we should let him do it.
Don’t feel guilty about it. Let it happen. Jesus knows better than ourselves what we truly need. We can see up to the bend in the road. Only Jesus can see around the bend.
So don’t worry about what’s around the bend, either.
The rod and staff of Jesus will comfort us and when we need it most we will feel our head anointed with oil and our cup running over. That is: we shall feel the certain peace inside us that passes all understanding.
Goodness, love and mercy will have followed us no matter where we went—even when we wandered off—and we will know deep down inside that we shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
We may forget someone’s name in the grocery store next week and someone might forget our name tomorrow.
But Jesus never will.
Ever.

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