In Scripture, followers of Jesus were identified in various ways. John the Baptist was identified as “the forerunner of Jesus.” Peter, James and John became known as “the inner circle.” The twelve apostles were all introduced by name (Matthew 10:2-4) and played a key role in the development of Christ’s church.
Most of the 70 disciples that went out two by two were unknown. Bible heroes like Abraham, Noah, Moses, Joshua and Paul were made famous as major players in the narrative of scripture. And who of us does not know David?
Hebrews 11 lists many in “Faith’s Hall of Fame,” so we are vaguely familiar with them. The reality is, however, those “known” to us are the exceptions. The masses of those throughout history who ran their race for God victoriously and who followed Jesus faithfully lived and served largely unknown and unnoticed.
As in life, while some roses grace royal gardens and others are carefully nurtured in greenhouses for public enjoyment - many times more grow in the wild, unnoticed by man but each the exquisite handiwork and possession of God.
When the Bible says, “By their fruit, you will recognize them” (Matt. 7:16), it is most often referring to the ordinary, commonplace conditions and the unconscious light of God as seen in us. (Gal. 5:19-26) Spiritual fruit does not scream for attention. It just is! Often, the only thing noticed is the aroma of His character. The true character of godliness that is important to God is most often unconscious. (John 7:38)
Do you feel unnoticed? Often overlooked and undervalued? Underappreciated? Like a cactus in the desert? Are you given to thoughts that many of your secret acts of kindness simply evaporate into thin air? Do you wonder if anyone cares? The unrecognized truth is that God notices it all. The Psalmist said, “You have looked deep into my heart, Lord, and you know all about me. You know when I am resting or when I am working, and from heaven, you discover my thoughts. You notice everything I do, and everywhere I go.” (Psalm 139:1-3 CEV)
The foundational makeup of heaven will be common, ordinary people of every race and culture who have embraced Jesus as their Saviour and sought to follow Him – largely unnoticed.
Be blessed my friend.
The Barnabas Group / Loads of Love