I Know My Name
He was a mangy looking dog. Abandoned as a puppy, he grew up in the streets. Master found him in the shelter the day before he was to be put down, for he was an unsightly dog that no one would adopt. Master brought him home, and gave him a bath that made him all shiny and clean. That is when then he got his name -Toby.
Just as his coat was getting fluffy and dry, Master went to check the barn. As soon as Toby saw the door open, he bolted out in a flash. Master called out his name, “Toby! Come back to Me!” But Toby did not know his name -he did not know Who he belonged to, and he did not know the plans of His Master. Toby just ran as fast as he could.
Master found him again in the shelter, all matted with filth, but He loved him all the more. Toby spent time with Master. He ate with Him, slept at the foot of His bed, and followed Him like a shadow. He came to love the smell of Master, and his tail now waged at the sound of His Voice.
In knowing the love of Master, Toby grew devoted to Him. He now understood that he belonged to Master. When he heard Master’s truck, He ran to meet Him. When Master called his name, he went bounding to Him. He sought the touch of Master’s tender hands. When Master said, “Fetch the sheep!” he delighted in chasing them into Master’s barn. And when Master said, “Watch the sheep!”, he proudly protected them -he would even die for them.
If Master said, “Come!”, and pointed to the truck, he would be overcome with joy to ride with Master, so much so, that he would act like a puppy. And when Master said, “Stay!”, Toby’s wag would slow a little, but he would dutifully guard the Master’s house.
At day’s end, Toby would lay at Master’s feet. It was there, in that time without words, with eyes lightly shut, that he felt especially close. But if he sensed the slightest stir, the eye closest to Master would peek open, and his tail would begin to wag with expectant joy.
Toby had become faithful to Master. Everything he did, he did for Master. Toby had come a long way since that wonderful, fearful day Master saved him. It only took a week or so, to learn the name by which he was called. But now, as the years have gone by, Toby, in his heart of hearts, has come to know the Name which makes him belong to Master!
Until we know our name, until we know who we really are, and who we belong to, we will not recognize the Voice who is calling. “When that day comes - it is Yahweh who speaks - …I will betroth you to myself for ever, betroth you with integrity and justice, with tenderness and love; I will betroth you to myself with faithfulness, and you will come to know Yahweh. …I will love Unloved; I will say to No-People-of-Mine, 'You are my people', and he will answer, 'You are my God'.” (Hosea 2:18)And as years go by 0f having been loved by Jesus, we can look back and remember that wonderful fearful day when he saved us -when our ears were opened, when we could recognize His Voice, when we could hear his Spirit whisper those Words we are all so desperate to hear, “You are My Beloved. I created you Good. You are Precious in My sight, and you belong to Me!”