Friday, December 08, 2006

What's In A Name?

When I was little, I learned of a girl named Sharon that everyone called "Shay". I liked that name! In fifth grade, I was going to a new school. A chance to get all my new friends to call ME Shay. It didn't work. The name did not stick. Guess I didn't look like a "Shay". A few special people do call me Shay or Shay Kay every now and then. It works for them to call me that. If you are not one of those people and you try to call me "Shay" today, I probably won't even look up. It's not my name. I loved the fact that one old friend used to call me "Sharona" like in the '70s song. It works for him but not for anyone else. It's not my name.

When we were naming our son, my husband wanted the name Michael. Michael was the name of his oldest brother that died very young, before any of the other children were born. I like the name Michael but not the nicknames associated with Michael...Mike, Mikey, Mickey. I agreed to the name under one condition. He would be called Michael. And he was...until my brother entered the picture and started calling him "Mike". Michael was in upper elementary school when this started happening. Michael loves his uncle and immediately loved his new nickname. Now, as an adult, all his friend know him as Mike. Most of the family still calls him Michael. Both names work for him.

This week, in a haste to get a business related email out, I shortened someones name to the common nickname for that person. Samuel (not his real name) to Sam. Very innocent. Just a quick response and slip of the typing. Samuel responded rather abruptly "Do not call me Sam. In the future only refer to me at Samuel." He obviously doesn't like the commonly used nickname at all.

Our Loving Lord has many, many names. I don't think He minds which name we use when we call on Him...as long as we DO call on Him. We can call him Abba, Jehovah, Jehovah Jira, Yahweh, Elohim, Adonai, the Way, the Truth, the Life, Bread of Life, Light of the World. We can also call Him "Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace" and more.

Aren't you glad that the Maker of the Universe knows you by name and doesn't care which of His many names that you use to call upon him? Will you take time today to reflect on His many names and what impact they have on your life? Jehovah-Shalom is the name that provides you with peace. Jehovah-rapha the name that lets you know He can heal you. Or just simply Jehovah. I AM. He indeed is...is all that you need. Will you speak His name today?
Acts 2:21 (KJV) And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.


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