Jesus calls you by name
Matthew 10:1-4 Then Jesus summoned his twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to cure every disease and every sickness. These are the names of the twelve apostles: first, Simon, also known as Peter, and his brother Andrew; James son of Zebedee, and his brother John; Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; Simon the Cananaean, and Judas Iscariot, the one who betrayed him.
As Jesus summons his disciples and sends them out (the very definition of “apostle”). They are called by name, but they are also called by how Jesus knows them.
In our baptism, Jesus summons us as well and then sends us out into the world. As he does so, he gives us no less authority than he did the original apostles, and he summons us with just as much knowledge of who we are and who we will become. This prayer is an invitation to reflect on who we are in Jesus’ eyes. We do this not because he does not know who we are, but so we can know that when Jesus summons us he takes all of who we are and that he loves all of who we are.
This is a prayer not meant to be prayed quickly or even repetitively as a whole. It is a prayer really meant to prime to pump for some time spent in reflection. You might choose to engage with this deeper reflection by writing down a few thoughts, or simply taking time to contemplate more deeply what is prompted within you. As you pray this prayer, pick one or two portions and mix and match what you are praying about so you begin to make new connections and then simply let the rest of it go for the day. As you pray, don’t fight what comes up that the Spirit reveals to you about who you are, the point of this prayer is that Jesus knows this about you already. Jesus in fact, loves you in this already. The whole point remember is that Jesus summons you not because he is mad or embarrassed about you and is calling you onto the carpet. Jesus is summoning you, to send you out. And he does this because of who you are, not in spite of who you are.
Let us pray.
As we are summoned by Jesus, he calls us by name, and he calls us by all the names we are known by: What are the names Jesus calls you by? Your given name? Your nicknames? Your pet names? Your online names?
Jesus knows these names and he calls to all of them- Come to me.
As we are summoned by Jesus, he calls us by whom we are related to. Who is your family of origin- your mother and father? Your siblings? Who is your family that you have chosen through the years?
Jesus knows where you have come from, the good that has instilled in you and the struggles that has caused you, the joy and the pain that have both come from the people you are closest to.
Jesus knows from whom you come, and calls you from them- come, have authority over unclean spirits.
As we are summoned by Jesus, he calls us in what we do. What are your jobs in life? What hats do you wear? What has been a joy in your life this week? What has taken your life out of you?
Jesus knows all your titles and calls you in them- come cast out unclean spirits.
As we are summoned by Jesus, he calls us from where we live. Where are you from? What advantages has this given you? Where has it left you disadvantaged? What has it taught you? What do you still long to learn?
Jesus knows where you are from, and calls you from there- come cure every disease and sickness.
As we are summoned by Jesus, he calls us though we betray him. What are the things of your life that weigh heavily upon you in your relationship with Jesus?
Jesus knows how you have betrayed him, and he calls you just as he did Judas- come, be my apostle.
Patrick Sipes is the founder and director of The Forming Spirit. You can learn more about him here.