Knowing Your Name

computer with a name tag

There’s something special about someone knowing you by your name. There’s definitely a difference when you go to a store and the store owner calls you by your name vs. just saying “hi”.

This is actually what moved Cyrus when he was studying the prophecies of Isaiah in learning how he was called of God by name to overthrow Babylon, to free the Jews and to help rebuild the temple.

How did God address Cyrus? Isaiah 45:1, 3 & 4 “Thus says the LORD to His anointed, To Cyrus, whose right hand I have held” “That you may know that I, the LORD, Who call you by your name, Am the God of Israel.” “I have even called you by your name; I have named you, though you have not known Me.”

God anointed Cyrus to a special work. He even guided him with specific instructions on how to overthrow Babylon. 

And this same God who called Cyrus to a special mission also called Cyrus specifically by his name. And the most beautiful part of this to me is that God had called Cyrus by his name before Cyrus even knew who God was. 

You see, there’s something special in a name. As 1 Samuel 25:25 states, “For as his name is, so is he”. So a name represents who a person is. 

If people know each other by name, there is usually a special connection of knowing each other that is not seen between people who don’t know each other’s name. 

And in the same way, before we were born, God had a plan and purpose for our lives. He even knew our name before we were even named!

In fact, even when we were in our mother’s womb and even long before we were thought of, God knew us and He knew our name! That’s how special we are to Him!

4 Years ago we flew here to Australia for a speaking engagement. Covid was escalating around the world at that time. So in the middle of our 1 month stay here the Australian Government shut down its borders so that no one could come in or out of the country and so we were stranded. 

We were initially staying in a tourist town and so in the beginning we were really enjoying ourselves. But what we initially thought would be over in a few weeks, turned into months and then into years.

Now although living in another country is fun and exciting to us and one of the best things that has ever happened to us, there is one thing that I miss the most and that is being known by my name. 

Yes we do have friends here and our most closest friends also live very near us which has turned out to be such a huge blessing! But not having a community to be connected with who know my name is truly missed!

You see in Hawaii, people knew my name. My physician knew my name and knew me personally as we grew up together in Hilo and went to the same grade school, high school and college. My Dentist also knew my name and knew me personally, as well as my family since I was a child.

My mailman knew my name as well, as he would always address me and my family by our first names whenever he would see us outside or when he would deliver a package to our door. He would also bring avocado’s to us from his tree or honey from his bee farm as gifts. He even gave my daughter a birthday card on her birthday addressed to her by her name.

The neighborhood where we lived was also a very special place where people knew our names. Often times when I would tell Yvette I was going to walk up to Boiling Pots Park and back (15 min walk), I often would come back 30 minutes, 1 hour or even 2 hours later because I would end up talking to one of our neighbors. This was also true of Yvette as she walked early every morning and would often talk with the other neighbors who also walked. 

So in Hawaii people knew my name and it made me feel seen and acknowledged, connected and loved!

So you can see why I long to be connected here in this new country where people don’t know my name.

In the four years we’ve been here, we’ve lived in 6 different locations. And the place we’re currently at, has been our home for a little over a year.

While here I have been making a conscious effort to build community in each location we have lived. 

One of the places that is special to me is the gym. It is so important to me that every time we have moved, I have done my research and visited the highest rated gyms in order to find that one gym that best matches me.

Where we are currently living, I love my gym. The people there are friendly and I’m greeted by my name.

Being in a community where people know your name is very healing! Connection is actually one of the ways that you can better manage your anxiety and fears. For there is healing whenever one is seen and loved through a connection. 

I know it can be hard today to get to know people, especially in today’s environment. We live in such a culture of fear, suspicion and mistrust that it’s hard to find healthy relationships of people with whom we can trust. Also because of the times we are living in with all of the electronics, busy-ness and distractions, etc., we are more disconnected than ever. 

I see this disconnection especially with the younger generation as many lack the basic people skills to just connect. In fact, I remember this being a need and being asked as a Pastor to give basic social etiquette classes to our church school students.

It is because of these things and more that you don’t really see people connecting in getting to really know each other and each others’ names. 

There’s a song that means a lot of me. It’s called, He Knows My Name*. I really like the first verse which goes like this: “I have a Maker. He formed my heart. Before even time began. My life was in His hands”

Whenever I hear this verse I am always moved. I always think about how God created me in my mother’s womb and was forming my heart and loving me even before I even knew who He was. Such love!

And in the same way, God knows your name! Your Maker while creating you in your mother’s womb knew your name even before you were born! And while you were being formed and your heart was being molded, He saw you and loved you!

You may not have a community where people know your name. Or you may be surrounded by people who do know your name but who don’t really know you. You may be even married living under the same roof with your spouse and not be connected. At times it may even seem like you are more like roommates or housemates rather than a couple in love. But whatever your situation may be, do know that you do have a God who not only knows your name but who also formed you and loves you!

You are special, known and loved by God! And being loved in this way, reveals to you that there is someone who does care about you! A lot!! And knowing you are loved like this will then give you a drive and a purpose to love and serve God in the same way you have been loved by Him!

I want to know the reality that God knows my name! That He knew me while I was still being formed! That He loved me even before I knew Him! And that He still loves me today! I want to experience the fullness of this Love, how about you? 

-Keala

We wanted to take this time to thank all of you for your continued love, prayers and support that you’ve given towards us and our ministry! We are very thankful and grateful for each and every one of you. You are all very special to us and we love you. We pray that God will continue to richly bless you, grow you and heal you. 

keala raising his finger up

Keala Thompson

International speaker, relationship specialist, and founder of A Loud and Clear Call Ministries.

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