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Jesus Knows Your Name

Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.

1 Peter 5:6-7
Jesus Knows Your Name Book Cover

In our culture of social media, Instagram, Facebook, IGTV, and YouTube, we are pressed to believe that if our faith is not celebrity status, it is not really faith. If our faith is not big enough to have followers and likes, then our faith is not enough. If what we do for Jesus isn’t seen on certain platforms, then we need to do more for Jesus. Celebrity status is not the litmus test of a life that loves and knows Jesus. It is not about how much others see of us—it is how much we see of God. Mary is a great example of a life of faith. Before anyone knew her name, Mary knew and saw God.

Mary did not have celebrity status at this point. No one knew Mary, yet Mary knew God. Mary knew God with the depth of her being. She knew God and could say, “Let it be to me according to your word.” She praises God with a song in Luke 1:46–55, proclaiming who he is and what he has done. She sings of his justice, his faithfulness, and his sight of the poor and lowly. She believes and knows that God sees her. God sees Mary, and Mary sees God. No one knew her, but Jesus did.

the gift of quiet

All of this changes very quickly when Jesus is born. King Herod hears the news and wants to find Jesus so he can kill him (Matthew 2:1–18). Mary is now known, and her son is a threat. Can you imagine what it would have been like if others had known Mary’s story at that point? What if they had known of the crazy, miraculous, culturally problematic pregnancy?

Before she and Jesus were known, Mary was given this gift of quiet and a space to deepen in faith. She was given a few months of reflection. A gift before the chaos. In that time she was able to confide in her cousin, lean into her husband, and deepen her praise and wonder of God. That time of anonymity was a gift of space to ponder, to reflect, to praise, and to get ready for what was to come. And what was to come would be widely public and incredibly painful.


We all feel the pull to be seen. We want others to notice us, our gifts, and what we have to offer. At times this can be a selfish pull, and we need to remain humble through confession. As we confess our sin, whether it is pride, selfishness, greed, or something else, God’s grace and mercies meet us. At other times the pull of being seen can be the longing to live as God has called you to live, to have someone notice your gifts, your mind, your heart, and your service. With so much competition, minimization, and comparison in our worlds, we are left unseen. Living a faithful life following Jesus does not have to be done on a stage or on a platform. Your obedience to him is not a show.


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Daily Question

Like Mary, how might these unseen spaces be a gift? How might this humble space be an opportunity to know God more deeply, to trust, and to be prepared for whatever and wherever God is calling you?

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Comments (10)

This gift of unseen spaces is the gift of being able to through the process of being molded and shaped in the presence of God alone. This intimate time allows us to build a strong foundation and relationship with the One who loves us the most, it allows us to learn the sound of His voice so that we are able to recognize it in the midst of all the noise, and it is a time where we can grow deeper understanding of the purpose He has for us. The space allows us to develop under His direction without distraction.

It allows for me to be still and know that He is God! It allows for me to be in His word and to be guided and counseled by Him first! There is focus and clarity! In the time and space with Him I get to know His voice so that no matter where I am or the situation I am in, I can hear Him calling!

Right now these unseen spaces for me are the quarantine we are all experiencing. I’m a teacher, so the struggle to learn how to do distance learning with my students has been challenging, and at times exhausting. It has taken me a bit of time to see this season as a gift. But, as I get the hang of what I am doing, I find the solitude to be precious. Although my routine has changed a bit, and I’ve gotten lazy about meeting with God each morning, I’ve realized that I need Him even more than usual. So, I’m reestablishing our time together. And this study gives me the perfect segue. I tend to be a worrier, so I am looking to God for my faith, trusting Him to meet me where I am, and walk with me through this season of uncertainty.

It says I’m His book, be still and know that I am God. I can sit quietly and speak to Him from my heart. He knows everything about me, and yet He still loves me. This quiet time is for me to get closer to Him….

Be still, and know that He is God!

I have fought and complained that while I awaken early, I needed something more. We recently moved to a new state and instead of being able to meet my neighbors and make new friends I have been quarantined at home. I am now realizing the reason. I really need this morning time in the presence of my Lord and Father. He speaks whether I listen or not. But, oh when I listen so much joy even among the tears.

I doubt that Mary in any way was concerned about being unseen or becoming famous for her faith. I bet if she was concerned about anything it was for being seen, being in the spotlight. I think her priority was the quiet, the connection, the internal work of trusting and believing God’s promises in her own life, knowing Jesus and understanding where he was and what he was doing and making sense of who he was. Staying close to Jesus, particularly as his mother, was her priority.

The unknown space so often gives me the opportunity to step back, reflect on all the ways God is and had been with me and strengthens my faith for what may be waiting for me on the other side of the rest/space. God is always with me, but so often in the chaos we lose focus and it is hard to see God when i am only focused on myself/to do list/etc.

For so long, I have longed for an opportunity to surrender all non-essential ‘stuff’ around me and block out the world, to be able to freely spend quiet time with God. Now the time has come and I am able to do this throughout the day. I am growing in my understanding of the Bible with more reading and diving deep, and building my relationship with God. I know this is His plan for me and am humbled by how He works in all this chaos.

It’s hard to take the time to be quiet and listen for God if I’m constantly putting on a show for Him and others. I’m 8 months pregnant and I know that as soon as the baby is born I will either neglect my quiet times or be in a state of constant prayer ("Please let him go to sleep, please help him stop crying, please give me patience," etc). I can use this time of preparation to build up my foundation with God so it’s even more natural to go to Him when I’m spent, instead of pushing that time back, over and over because I’m too tired.

To come to Jesus and lay our hearts and burdens down … allowing him to heal and put ourselves in a place of trust. To deepen our relationship with him.. by taking the next step and surrendering ourselves. Then allow him to do in us what he will…. to place ourselves in a position to receive his calling and walk in it to do his will.

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