What’s in a Name?

by | Nov 16, 2018 | Friday Messages

Snow-top Mountain Under Clear Sky

God is good all the time; all the time God is good.

With only one more week to go until the Thanksgiving holiday, it only seemed fitting to start off this note with such a true statement: “God is good…” We have so much to be thankful for because God is good all the time.

This past weekend I had a chance to participate at the youth weekend being held at Fairwood. The theme for the weekend centered on the different names of God and what we learn about His character through them. It is such an inspiring topic to meditate on. I was blessed to be able to share some of my thoughts with the youth on Sunday and I would like to recap a bit of what I talked about.

One of the main thoughts I shared was that names have power. Throughout Scripture, we read many accounts of how a name was given to a person for the purpose of revealing part of their identity. One of my favorite examples of this is when Jacob’s name was changed to Israel. It reflected a complete change of identity! After stressing to the youth that the names of God were not just names without meaning, but names of power that can affect our lives in so many ways, I told them that they too had names of power. In preparation for the meeting, I looked up the meaning of all the names of the youth present so I could tell them what their names meant. Going through the list, I had each one stand up, told them the meaning of their name, and then exhorted them in the different ways that God might use them based on what the meaning of their name was. It was a powerful way to show them that they all had a purpose in the kingdom of God.

Have you ever thought about how the meaning of your name might apply to what God has specifically gifted you with and how you might use that in order to advance the kingdom of God? My full name is Robert James Godfrey. Robert means “bright fame,” James means ”supplanter,” and Godfrey means “God’s peace.” After meditating on it a while, this is one interpretation of what my name could mean for me: to use my role in the spotlight to supplant the devil and his evil by bringing the lost to Christ where they can find God’s peace. I find it very fascinating to think about.

As you take time for reflections this Sabbath, I encourage you to take a little time to find the meaning of your own name and what it could mean for you. Names are powerful. We are given names for a reason, and you may find that you live up to your name more than you know.

God is good all the time—all the time God is good!

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