December 22, 2023

One Phone Call

Isaiah 43:1-2

“I have summoned you by name. You are mine.”

—  Isaiah 43:1

“Alright, you can make one phone call.”

Gary didn’t know any of his family members’ phone numbers, and the police officer was giving him one phone call to make. The night before, he drank too much, got into an argument with a stranger, and started yelling at the top of his lungs outside a liquor store. His phone fell and was lost in the melee. He was arrested for public disturbance, slept in a jail cell, and woke up in a daze.

Again the officer said, “You can make one phone call.”

He rattled off the number of Roseland Christian Ministries by heart to the officer and said, “Ask for Kisha or Pastor Joe. They know me there. Tell them Gary is in trouble and needs some help.”

I am grateful to be part of a church where the community knows the phone number by heart. I am grateful to be part of a church where somebody in their lowest state, humiliated by bad decisions, disease, addiction, or trouble, can say, “Call them; they know me there.” I’m grateful for the God who calls us and knows us by name.

No matter how badly you have messed up, or what you may have become—God knows you by name and claims you. You belong to God.

Lord, we are grateful that you call us by name and that you claim us. We are grateful that we belong to you, body and soul. Amen.

About the author — Joe Huizenga

Joe Huizenga serves as pastor and executive director of Roseland Christian Ministries in Chicago, Illinois. He and his wife, Cate, have four children.

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