Are you bad at remembering names? My mom is. She totally blanks on people’s names. I do something much more embarrassing: I think I know people’s names, but instead I call them the wrong name.

 

Remembering a name means a great deal to someone. A name is how someone is identified, and by recalling someone’s name we prove we know who they are.

 

When God told Moses His name, He called Himself “I AM” (Exodus 3:14). This is the most divine, personal, and intimate name for God that the Scriptures give. In fact, the Israelites would not even write or say it, but instead referred to Him as “the name.” God’s introduction was intentional. Our hearts were made for a close, personal relationship, and God graciously chose to be that relationship, fulfilling that need in us.

 

Have you ever forgotten your own name? Probably not, unless, like me, you froze when a Starbucks’ barista caught you off guard when asking the name on the order. I told her my name was Kate, which is not even remotely close to my name.

 

Jesus never forgets a name. And He calls the lost—you and me—found.

 

In Luke 19, Zacchaeus forgot his name. Instead, he began to make up what he thought his name was, identifying himself by his sins: tax collector, cheater, sinner, unwanted, unloved, lost. Then Jesus came into the picture, and never once does He forget a name: “Zacchaeus, come down quickly, because I must stay at your house today” (Luke 19:5). Jesus didn’t acknowledge Zacchaeus as an outsider watching from the tree, but He offered to sit and dine with Him.

 

Jesus doesn’t want us to live on the sidelines but to join Him. And to join Him, we must know His name. His name is Yahweh, the close, personal God. Despite what we think, God’s name has never changed. God is unchanging, and He is not affected by our failures.

 

The life of Jesus demonstrates the love God has been, the love God is, and the love He always will be. He seeks, pursues, and calls us. He is the one who no longer allows us to be called by the wrong name. When we put our faith in Him, no longer will we be called sinners; we are now known as saved, redeemed, loved, wanted, claimed. We can remember the names Jesus gives us when we remember who Jesus is. He is Yahweh, the One our hearts were made for, the One who “came to seek and to save the lost” (Luke 19:10).

 

 

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Melissa Fuller

Melissa Fuller

Melissa loves God’s Word and is committed to helping women fall in love with Scripture (and its author!). She has a ThM from Dallas Theological Seminary and served as the general editor of the NET Love God Greatly Bible and the managing editor of the CSB She Reads Truth Bible and the CSB (in)courage Devotional Bible. She currently resides in Atlanta, GA, loves running and hiking and is currently pursuing her goal of visiting all the National Parks in the US!

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