When was the last time you
experienced the love of being known?
Last weekend, I sat in a small town diner
eating breakfast with my mom and dad.
My folks moved to Florida several years ago,
but had come back to Lodi, WI
where they had spent most of their lives,
to visit a long time friend who was sick.
Lodi is where my dad met my mom,
where he’d been a football hero,
served as the local cop
and an off-duty craftsman.
Lodi is where he is recognized
as a horse-shoe champion
and good friend to many.
Our breakfast was interrupted lots of times
by other old men who’d spotted my dad
and wanted to say hello.
He shook hands and gave hugs.
Dad laughed heartily about their retirement activities,
and commiserated about the cost of living.
He shook his head sadly
over the discovery of friends long dead or
currently battling an illness or crisis.
My dad is KNOWN in Lodi, WI.
He is recognized.
He is celebrated for who he is.
To be known like my dad at the diner feels great.
He left the diner brighter and lighter.
The little smile on his face told the secret
of being known.
To be known is to experience love.
Who wouldn’t want the kind of reception
my dad got?
To walk into a place and
have people call your name,
wave you over,
ask how you are,
hang on your every word,
wish they had more time with you?
You may not have my dad’s experience,
but you are known.
You are known and celebrated
by the Most High God.
To be known by God is
to experience His love.
My dad is loved,
not because he is perfect,
but because is known.
All the shenanigans he shared
with the guys at the diner over the years
created a special knowing.
They know the secrets,
the strengths and the weaknesses.
They know the hurts and the mistakes,
the moments of heroism.
God knows you like that.
As His creation, He loves you.
As His child, He loves you.
As His bride, He loves you.
We long to be known.
It declares that we are worthy of acceptance.
It verifies that we are lovable.
When we don’t feel that acceptance,
or more often,
we turn to
something or someone
to fill what’s missing.
Even in those times when you fall short,
when you choose sin or lies over truth,
God loves you!
As a lost sheep, He loves you.
As the prodigal daughter, He loves you.
As the princess or the pauper, He loves you.
Not only does God know you,
He knows what you think, and do, and why.
Ps. 139 says,
You have searched me, Lord,
and you know me.
You know when I sit and when I rise,
you perceive my thoughts from afar.
You discern my going out and my lying down;
you are familiar with all my ways.
Before a word is on my tongue
you, Lord, know it completely.
When God created you,
He knew that you would not be perfect,
so He made a way to make amends for your missteps.
He paid for your mistakes with His Son’s life.
Jesus died so you might know you are loved.
God knows you.
He loves you.
To be known by God
is to experience His love.