I’ve been enjoying Facebook these last few months, staying up-to-date with friends and relatives through pictures and messages. Although I’ve learned to post photos, leave comments and send private notes, I’ve never learned to “tag” someone.
Facebook tagging tells who’s who in a picture. After you type a name over a face, someone else can then hover their mouse on that person, and like magic the name pops into view. My kids are experts at tagging, and I’ve come to recognize many of their friends I haven’t met, by mouse-hovering.
Although I can’t tag on Facebook, I’ve recently accomplished another kind of tagging, fastening a new nametag on Jack. His old tag, the one with my name, address and phone on it, was worn blank. If he ran off, a rescuer wouldn’t know who to call.
Every night at bedtime, I “undress” Jack by taking off his collar. (He’s got a very thick neck and sleeps better without it.) Last week, however, I went to get him dressed in the morning and couldn’t find his collar. Because we’re renovating at my house, I figured it was buried somewhere in the debris and would eventually turn up.
After three days of hunting, I had only one option left, to ask Jack. “Where’s your collar, buddy?” But he had no suggestions. I hated losing the new tag, his name on one side and my info on the other. All I could figure was I’d had a senior moment and put it in the freezer, my sock drawer or the wood pile. But suddenly, Jack came forth with an answer.
We were walking home from the beach (him naked, me dressed) when he pranced onto a friend’s lawn to sniff. I kept walking, whistling for him to come but eventually backtracking to get him. There he was, firmly planted over his collar in the middle of the yard as if to say, “You asked me, so I’m telling you.” It must have slipped over his head a few days earlier when he’d been snoofing there.
I’m glad God doesn’t need to tag us to know us. He’s known us since before we were born, name and all, and he’ll know us forever. Names are important to him, though, and not just ours.
He promises to deal harshly with anyone who takes his name in vain, and he watches to see if we’ll honor it. He invites us to call on his name for help, to worship his name in reverence, and to fear it as the beginning of wisdom. And he also promises to reward those who genuinely love his name.
I’m happy to report Jack is once again properly dressed, but I’m confident God would know his name, even if he wasn’t tagged.
“Those who feared the Lord spoke with each other, and the Lord listened to what they said. In his presence, a scroll of remembrance was written to record the names of those who feared him and always thought about the honor of his name.” (Malachi 3:16)