I was one of four girls in our family.
Which meant lots of emotion and words and activity.
One way my parents knew to get our attention was to yell.
"ArleneDeeDeeDebbieSusie...who ever you are!"
I hated it. Why couldn't my parents take the time to figure out who they wanted?
I swore I would never do that to my kids.
Then I had kids.
The first time I did it, I cringed.
"JeremyJasonJackiJonathan...whoever you are!"
It was so easy to do. And it got the job done.
But it definitely lacked something...
I was thinking about this last week while volunteering at Operation Christmas Child.
You sign in, fill out a name tag, get oriented, and you're off and running.
For one day you work in a warehouse the size of a football field, with hundreds of other volunteers.
All wearing name tags.
I'm sure it was an extrovert's delight...being surrounded by chatty, singing, cheering people.
But for an introvert? I loved my little assigned spot on the assembly line where I could do my small part unseen...quietly...anonymously.
Except for one problem. I had a name tag. With my name on it.
So when I was "caught" carrying damaged shoe boxes to the " Shoe Box Hospital" and a staff member shouted out, "Thank you, ARLENE!" for all the world to hear, I almost dropped the boxes.
She not only knew my name...
She noticed what I was doing!
And that set me to thinking about the whole "He sees you when you're sleeping...he knows when you're awake" thing.
Not Santa Claus.
At this time of year, when everything is BIG. GLITZY. LOUD.
And the world screams out, "Do more!" "Be more!" "Spend more!"
Jesus stands quietly apart.
Loving you and calling you by name.
Everything you do out of love for Him.
The gifts you give...not just monetary...but of your time. Your energy. Your love. Even when you don't feel like it.
The sacrifices you make...day after day after day. Mostly unnoticed.
The choices you make to honor and obey Him. Even when the world calls you a fool.
Does anyone notice? Does it make any difference?
Yes, dear one, it does.