John 10:3 – The watchman opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. (NIV)
Psalm 139:13 – For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. (NIV)
He is very old and has cataracts. Only three teeth remain, and he has a severe heart condition. Stress causes him to chew his tongue constantly. His nails were so long that they had grown under and curled into his foot pads. Shaving him down was the only alternative, as his black, curly hair had matted to his tiny, thin body. He was picked up wandering the streets, but nobody knew his name.
He has once been loved; we can tell that by his behaviour and his manner. What happened, we don't know. We only know that he needed a home. He needed love and care in his old age. When he first arrived, we called out every conceivable name we could think of, but he responded to none of them. We finally decided to call him "Peanut", as perhaps he had a non-English name, one which we would never know.
As I contemplated this dilemma, I was reminded that as people, no matter what happens to us or where we are or who we are, there is Someone who always knows our name. God created each and every one of us. He knows everything about us, including our names. We may reach a time in our life when, due to illness or infirmity, we no longer know who we are, not even our own name, but God always knows and always cares. We are never lost to Him.
Through the prophet Isaiah, God gives us this marvellous truth and promise:
Isaiah 46:3b-4 – I have created you and cared for you since you were born. I will be your God through all your lifetime, yes, even when your hair is white with age. I made you and I will care for you. I will carry you along and be your Saviour. (TLB)
God's desire is that each and every person recognize Him for who He is: God. He longs to save us from ourselves, from our sin. All through our lives, whether we acknowledge Him or not, He knows us, watches us, and cares for us. Even when our hair is white with age, He carries us along and desires to be our Saviour. He desires for us to be free from the darkness and eternal death of our inherent sin, and He has provided the way of our escape through His Son, Jesus Christ.
We opened our hearts and home to Peanut when no-one else would have him. Right now, God's heart and home is open to each one who is reading this devotional. Perhaps you have never taken that step in faith to tell God that you need Him. For one reason or another, you have never asked Him, in Jesus' name, to forgive your sins and welcome you into His home and family for eternity.
When we opened our arms to Peanut, he chose to enter. The welcoming arms of God are open to you, right now. What choice will you make?
Prayer: Lord God and wonderful heavenly Father, thank You that You love and care for us all the days of our lives. We pray this day that hearts around the world will be open to You and Your gift of salvation through Jesus Christ. We ask that many will choose to come home to Your open arms of eternity. In Christ's name, we pray. Amen.