He called his disciples to himself, and from them he chose Twelve, whom he also named Apostles. // Luke 6:13
Perched in the choir loft at the back of the church, I watched with delight as the line of young people filed into the aisle and paused, waiting to be called. I thought of all that had brought them to this day: the years of Wednesday night faith formation classes, the service hours, the conversations, all the prayers that had been prayed over each one.
As the Bishop waited, each one was called forward. One at a time, their sponsors placed a hand on the confirmands’ shoulders and presented them, using their chosen confirmation saints’ names. Catherine. Paul. Francis. Elizabeth. James. Peter. Kateri. I thought of all the saints before who had chosen these same names and how many would follow. Every individual in that long line was chosen by God and called by name, responding to the gift of faith in their hearts and the work of grace in their lives.
In today’s Gospel, Saint Luke shares his record of the calling of Jesus’ Apostles. Saint Luke lists their names, taking care to notate where someone with the same name is a different person, neatly cataloging what makes one Simon unique from another, including Judas’ name even though it didn’t end well. What matters in this record is that they were called and chosen by name, each imperfectly unique and yet perfectly loved.
Names matter. Maybe you always felt like one of five people with the same name in school, or maybe you have a name that often gets mispronounced or misspelled. Maybe people have always mixed your name up with your older sister’s. Maybe the name you were given at birth isn’t the name you have chosen to go by. Whatever your name is, Jesus knows you, and He calls you by your name to follow Him.
Take a moment today to speak your own name aloud. Imagine Jesus is speaking it to you, calling you, inviting you to come closer to Him.Jesus knows you. // Abbey Dupuy Click To Tweet