A lesson from my name

After I finish writing this, I’ll start a load of laundry and begin the dreaded packing process. Even if I’m going somewhere fun and exciting, I still dread the packing.


I’m leaving for school on Sunday. Classes start on Wednesday. Between Sunday and Wednesday, there will be a million other things I need to do, and I was just telling my mom about how unprepared I feel.

I’ve been home, interning from my bedroom, with my dog under my desk all summer. Sometimes I catch her snoring and it’s really loud but also really cute.

It was all very simple, but also quite productive. I wrote a ton, launched a book, organized half our house, learned to bake (to some extent), and started gardening. I read some good books, went on some cool hikes, ate a lot of ice cream, and met some great people.

But I know I can’t just be a stay-at-home daughter who acts like a retired grandma who spends her days writing, baking, and gardening forever. Honestly though, I really enjoyed it.


I know I need to get back campus and finish up school so I can get a job and begin “real life.” And I’m not complaining about that, I'm looking forward to getting back to work, but despite this being my fourth time packing up and moving out, I still feel really unprepared.


Last week I was responding to emails from August 9, thinking that my responses were still timely because it was August 10. Except it was actually August 14. I haven’t even gotten to campus and I’m already falling behind.


So to the people who waited five days for a response from me, sorry about that.


But as I sifted through my inbox, filling out my calendar, answering questioners, making lists, and mentally preparing myself for the next 16 weeks, I got a little overwhelmed.


It’s not just the school-related stuff either, it’s all the other things I sign myself up for. I haven’t gotten it packed into my brain quite yet that I don’t have to do or be everything. And I know I’m not the only person who does this.


Sometimes when I write in my prayer journal, I stop praying. I keep writing, but instead of praying, I write what I’m hearing God say. I learned to do this in fifth grade and I’ve been doing it ever since.


Today, I wrote:


“I just need you, as you are. Just Calli. Just do what Calli needs to do and be who Calli already is.”


First of all, writing my name out like that feels weird. But as I read that over again, tears came to my eyes.


God knows my name. And I know we all know this. We’ve all heard the comforting words: “He knows every hair on your head.” But think about it, He knows our names. He calls us by name.

Sometimes when I’m upset and talking about it with Chance, he’ll hug me and tell me things will be okay. He reminds me that we’re not the ones in control and that God is.


And then sometimes, he’ll put his hands on my shoulders and make me look in his eyes, and he says my name.



“Calli? Are you listening to me? I mean this.”


I already know he’s talking to me. I already know he knows my name. But hearing him say it catches my attention and I know it means he means what he’s saying and he wants me to know it.


And the same goes for God. We know He knows us, but if you listen for His voice, if you hear Him call your name, what He's saying becomes something way more personal and much more meaningful.


If you listen, I bet He’ll tell you that you’re already enough, just as you are (insert your name here), because He made you. He calls you. He loves you.

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© 2020 by Calli Townsend.