It’s amazing to me the meaning of names. You see, in Hebrew times, names were a very powerful explanation of a child’s life path, but also how a child lived, loved, related, and was known to its family and friends – it literally DEFINED them.
The playwright William Shakespeare once wrote,
“What’s in a name? That which we call a rose, by any other name would still smell as sweet.”
(Romeo and Juliet, Juliet, Act II, Scene ii, Lines 1-2).
This is an example of an epic force in the pursuit of truth. In this classic dramatic tragedy, Juliet was trying to convince Romeo that the Capulet- Montague family feud was meaningless and that he just needed to surrender to the sweet truth before them – that they were madly in love and that he needed to “deny [his] father” so their “star-crossed” love could bloom in all its glory. Well, we all know what ends up happening. In true Shakespeare tragedy form, the two young lovers die in a confused love state of suicide, cyanide, and sword – no love life lived together, no new family to embrace. (Sorry for the spoiler literary lovers, but that’s Shakespeare for ya!).
Throughout this whole play, Shakespeare loses a very simple truth laid out in Scripture – a name MEANS something. It means a LOT! A name means so much that when the angel Gabriel came before Mary, he declared the Son of God’s name first and foremost after his declaration of the birth! In Luke 1:31-33 he announces:
“’You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus. He will be very great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David. And he will reign over Israel forever; his Kingdom will never end!’”
In the declaration of Jesus’ birth in Isaiah 9 verse 6-7, His name is even further declared in praise:
“For a child is born to us, a son is given to us. The government will rest on his shoulders. And he will be called: Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. His government and its peace will never end. He will rule with fairness and justice from the throne of his ancestor David for all eternity. The passionate commitment of the LORD of Heaven’s Armies will make this happen!”
One way in which the Lord has revealed important things to me is through some of my very special mentors. Each of these ladies (with the exception of two who share the same name, similar roles and have similar personality traits) has a different name. Tonight, I was researching the meaning of the names of my mentors. I can think of nine women of the Lord that God uses in my life right now on a regular basis.
As I thought about these ladies and how they pour into me and I associated the meaning of their names with their roles in my life, I found not only do the meaning of their names fit the character trait in which God is trying to hone in me through their example, but some of them even mean the representation of the times in my life when they have poured the most into me! As I sat and drank in the power of the moment in which I saw the truth of the Bible come alive through names, I couldn’t help but be amazed at our God’s beautiful orchestration of His Church:
1 Corinthians 12:12, 14-18
“The human body has many parts, but the many parts make up one whole body. So it is with the body of Christ. Yes, the body has many different parts, not just one part. If the foot says, “I am not a part of the body because I am not a hand,” that does not make it any less a part of the body. And if the ear says, “I am not part of the body because I am not an eye,” would that make it any less a part of the body? If the whole body were an eye, how would you hear? Or if your whole body were an ear, how would you smell anything? But our bodies have many parts, and God has put each part just where he wants it.”
My name is Sarah. Sarah means “princess”. Recently, I realized God gave me a new name upon my choosing Him as my Lord and Savior – WARRIOR. Put those two names together and I’m a force to be reckoned with! But let me caution you: It’s not ME who is the warrior princess. It is CHRIST IN ME!
“My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” – Galatians 2:20
Be challenged, dear sisters. Your name MEANS something. You are LOVED. You are CALLED. You are REDEEMED. You are God’s – A DAUGHTER OF THE MOST HIGH KING. And He has chosen you, named you, and called you.
Thank You, Father, for naming us and claiming us. I have a beautiful image in my head right now – a small girl’s tiny hand clutched tightly to her Daddy’s giant middle finger – Your finger – as her big, multi-colored eyes gaze lovingly up to her Daddy’s wide, strong frame of a body, his gentle eyes smiling lovingly, reassuredly, proudly downward toward His small daughter. Wow……. What a glorious picture. Thank You, Father, that You never leave us or forsake us. In Jesus’ precious, powerful name. AMEN.