This was an interesting morning! (And yes, I am aware I've already missed a day of NaBloWriMo. Too bad.) I wound up teaching the 1st-3rd grade class today, a little by surprise, so I went in early to prepare my lesson. The lesson was on prayer, using the story of Samson's parents as the example. Which was fun, because Sunday School curriculums usually start Samson's story after his birth, not before. So as I read read the text in Judges 13, two things jumped out at me.
The first was when the couple asks the angel his name. He replies with, "Why do you ask my name?...It is too wonderful for you to understand." (Judges 13:17-18). Imagine that. The name of the angel is too wonderful for a human to understand. Makes me want to know what it is! But it also got me thinking about names.
Names in the Bible always have significance, much more than we tend to place on names now. There's always a meaning, a purpose to a person's name. And we see in the Bible so many instances of God changing a person's name after they encounter Him. And we see prophets giving specific names to their children to make a point about the Lord. But what about us? Yes, we have names given to us by our parents, but I believe there is also a special, wonderful name that God calls us. Something unique to who we are, something too wonderful for us to understand. And maybe that's why, after encountering the Lord in a powerful and unusual way, we see so many Bible figures change their names.
Think about Simon. After meeting Jesus, his name is changed to Peter, meaning Rock, because he will play a role in establishing the Kingdom of God on Earth. Prior to following Jesus, such a name change would be incomprehensible. The name would be too wonderful for Simon to understand, to marvelous a destiny to comprehend. But after knowing Jesus, and serving Him so closely, Simon Peter was sure he would never leave Jesus. He was able to understand the new name, even if he wasn't fully living up to it yet.
I believe God has the same for us. That He has a special name, a significant calling for each one of us waiting to be revealed when the time comes that we will be able to understand it. What a powerful thought that the God of the universe has a special name for me! A special message for the world, through me!
I know I said I had two things, but that took longer than I expected it to, and I'm tired! Plus, I have to be up early tomorrow for work. So that's all you get for tonight! Tune in tomorrow, and I'll try to remember to share the other part!
What do you think about this? Do you see names as simply identifiers, or do you see them as a calling and destiny?