I have three dogs. They’re all roughly the same size, and roughly the same breed – Labs or Lab mixes, two black and one yellow.

Three similar dogs, and yet, even in the dark, I can tell them apart.

Each one has a different way of breathing and moving. Each one exudes a different kind of energy. I know if it’s Annie or Delta next to me, even if I can’t see them, because of they way their bodies move.

What’s more, they know us. They may bark at strangers and their cars, but they don’t make a sound when we are with them. They don’t bark when our cars drive up the way they do when an unfamiliar vehicle approaches.

How does that happen? Because they’re our dogs, and we’re their people. We’ve spent time together, meeting each others’ needs – for food, shelter, affection, and protection.

God’s word tells us that His people will know Him, and He will know them. His people listen to His voice and obey His commands, in the same way that my dogs will sit for me but not for my mom.

“My sheep recognize my voice. I know them, and they follow me. “

This kind of familiarity doesn’t happen overnight, and it doesn’t happen without significant investment in each other.

God has already made the investment in us, by sending His Son to die on the cross and redeem us from our sins. If He never did another thing for us, that would be enough! But there’s so much more He offers, if we just learn to listen to Him.

Are you going to make the investment today? Will you spend your time, your thoughts, your motivations on Godly things? Will you learn to listen to His voice?

There is more than a doggie biscuit as a reward when we learn to obey Him.