Throughout the reading today my eyes scanned over the many names. Beginning with Adam. The first man. The man we all began from. Our roots.
Many of these names I am unable to pronounce and wonder however did they come up with this mix of letters! Some I recognize from other accounts in the Scriptures. My brain kept thinking about how we are all given a name and we are all intertwined somehow, someway on this earth.
The ripples of "us".
The ripples of those before us, those we create, those ahead of us will create - all will touch the ripples of others.
I have been thinking most of the day about the names of persons in my life. Names that come along with a ripple which had in some way of forming me. I thought about the different persons I encounter day to day, learning their names and visiting, knowing our "ripples" were touching. I stand amazed at how important "we" are to our ABBA.
He not only knows us by name, He loves and cares enough to give us a name.
When you bestow a name upon someone, it is usually a process which takes many times saying one over and over until the right one rings true in your ear and falls easily from your lips. I think about the ones I love and how I delight in saying their names. How I delight in remembering "ripples" associated with each name. How I love to hear them call - my name.
The Scriptures today of all the names are not just a mixture of vowels and consonants. They are the names of someone. Someone's, who are part of your family tree. Someone's, whose "ripples" have become a part of "you" handed down throughout the ages.
I love knowing when I die, my ABBA has a new name chosen just for me. One He will delight in saying. Because this is just how much He loves me. Just how much He loves all of "us".
He gives us a name He has chosen just for each one of "us". Wow! Just hope I can pronounce it......
I loved an article I read, "Kids Talk About God" by Carey Kinsolving. Below are a few of the quotes from the kids she interviewed.
"I think God will give me 'Bubba' as a new name," says Andrew, age 11. "'Bubba' means like a good friend. I think everybody will have a good name in heaven because there is no evil there."
If there's a southern section of heaven, Bubba should work just fine.
It's "Scooby Doo" for Drew, 7. "He's my favorite character, and he's always funny."
"My name will be 'Glitter' because my halo will glitter if I live the life that pleases God," says Jesse, 7.
Please notice the word "if" in Jesse's statement. Eternal life is a free gift received by all who trust the Lord Jesus as their savior, but kingdom rewards are earned by faithful service. Those who live in dependence on God experience the power of Christ's life in them. God has reserved new names on white stones for those who live overcoming lives.
Victorious athletes in the ancient Greek games received a white stone. In this case, God writes on a white stone a new name that only the recipient knows.
Michael Jordan is known as "Air" Jordan. Have you ever heard of Eldrick Woods?
What about "Tiger" Woods? Eldrick is Tiger's birth name.
I seriously doubt that anyone's new name in heaven will relate to their athletic prowess.
I wonder if the widow whom Jesus commended because she gave two mites (copper coins) to the temple treasury will be called "Mighty Mite." We can only imagine.
Husbands and wives sometimes develop endearing names for each other that they reserve for private moments. God has intimate, personal names for faithful believers.
"If God gave me a name, it would have something to do with horses because I love them," says Jordan, 9. "They are so beautiful. So I would be called 'Wild Stallion.'"
I've seen wild stallions running free in the Nevada desert. God wants us to run free and unfettered in our love and devotion to him. He gave us the desire for intimacy, beauty and adventure. All attempts to fill these desires apart from God end in frustration and futility.
We may think we're running free when we run away from God, but we've been bridled by the evil one. "Eternity in our hearts" is how the Bible labels our longing for reality.
Author John Eldredge explores this longing like no one else I've ever read.
"We like to put God in a box confined to our Sunday-morning church experience. But what happens when God appears in a burning bush, as he did to Moses? If God issues new names commensurate with our character and overcoming experiences, why not aspire to something interesting? How about names like "Fireball," "Burning Heart" or "God-Chaser"? An aspirant to such a name won't be sitting entranced for hours a day in front of the TV."
The prophet Jeremiah wrote, "But His word was in my heart like a burning fire" (Jeremiah 20:9).
“I hope my new name is 'Love,'" says Rebecca, 9.
Think about this: God wants to give you a new name better than any name achieved by the fame and fortune of this world.
Memorize this Truth:
"To him who overcomes, I will give some of the hidden manna to eat. And I will give him a white stone, and on the stone a new name written, which no one knows except him who receives it" (Revelation 2:17).
Ask yourself this question: When God gives you a new name in heaven, what could it be?