A little over a year ago, I got a new name.
It’s the best name I’ve ever heard in my life.
When Eliana was not quite six months old, she surprised me by crying out in extreme distress, “mmm-Mom!” I thought it must be a fluke, but then I heard it again, and again, and again. It was her first word.
She doesn’t use it often. The main times I hear it are when she’s very scared, unsure of herself, or upset. I don’t like for her to be upset, but it feels wonderful to know that when she is, my name is the one she calls.
She’s recently learned to say “Da da” and apply it correctly. It’s become her favorite word. She wakes up in the morning calling, “Da, da, da, da, dad-DY!” She walks around the house calling his name. Every noise she hears is thought to be him. My name is still reserved for special occasions.
I don’t think it’ll be much longer before she starts to call me by name regularly. But I know how I feel when I hear it now. It’s as if the world stops and all my attention turns to her. Tunnel-vision. What does my sweet child need? How can I relieve her distress?
I wonder if Jesus feels the same way about us calling out His name? Does He immediately stop and turn toward us, eager to find out what we need? Is it music in His ears?
From what I can tell from the Bible, Jesus loves to hear us call His name. Today I’m imagining that when I do, He is filled with joy and ready to meet our need. Even if He doesn’t meet it in the way we’d like Him to do, like the times when I have to allow Eliana to experience some pain for a greater purpose, I believe He still stands beside us. He still makes His presence known to us – if only we’ll ask Him to show up and help us. If only we’ll thank Him and praise Him and give Him our love.
It’s time to sign off now. My daughter just woke up and is in her bed calling, “Da da da da, dad-DY!”