I was born and raised in Omaha and although I have spent many years away from this area I was excited about moving back to Blair in 1991. I have a heritage here. My dad did stucco and stone jobs all over the city of Omaha and in Blair. Every time I see one I feel a sense of pride and identity with the city that goes beyond me.

Omaha is entirely different from Garrison Keillor’s home town of “Lake Wobegon,” where “all the women are strong, all the men are good-looking, and all the children are above average,” but I understand the spirit.

I believe the Israelites had pride in their assigned cities as well.  Chapter 19 of Joshua wears us out in the reading because of the list of all the cities assigned to the various tribes.  It gets quite tedious,  but not if you were looking for your own name. Even Boice observes that “there must also have been a measure of pride as people looked over the list and saw their own towns. The record was a way of saying that each town was important.”

Amongst the billions of names alive today on the face of the earth, Our Lord is keeping a list of names of those who are His. This imagery referred to as the “Book of Life” is God’s way of saying that each of us is important.

Hey, you and me; we’re important to God.