Sunday, January 1, 2012

"You Want to Go Where Everybody Knows Your Name . . ."

Revelation 19:12
His eyes are like blazing fire, and on his head are many crowns. He has a name written on him that no one knows but he himself.

Do you have a nickname? Many of us do. We may even use our nickname preferentially over our given one.

Take my husband, Danny, for instance. Everyone assumes "Danny" is a nickname for "Daniel". Wrong! His full first name is Italian: Dionino.

Does he ever use his real name? Rarely!

He always goes by "Danny".

That's the name everyone knows him by.

While I have entertained shortened versions of my name in the past, unlike Danny, I don't feel comfortable with them. I'm not a "Marty" or an MJ (short for Martha Jane).

Plain ol' "Martha" is fine with me.

Whether we go by our first name, middle name, or nickname, the most important thing for us is that others get it right.

Teachers know that only too well . . .

When I taught middle school, my most important task in that first wee is learning the names of my students. It's not easy to memorize the names of 125 brand new faces, but I force myself to concentrate.

And, fortunately, by week's end, I succeed.

Unfortunately, however, accruing all the new names means something else has to go by the wayside in the memory department. And, sadly, the first thing to go are the names of the students from the last year.

Imagine how embarrassing it is for me when they come by the classroom to say "hello" and I draw a blank. A complete and utter blank . . .

Thank goodness for terms of endearment!

"Hi, Sweetie, so good to see you!"

"So glad you stopped by, Honey."

They haven't a clue I've forgotten their names.

The ones that just last year were written on my heart.

They are content with being a "sweetie" or a "honey".

And, I am saved . . .
Many names are ascribed to God. None, but none, can ever adequately describe who He is. No matter how grand and glorious, they will always fall far short of the name known only to Him.

But, He has given us one Name that we, in our humanness, can understand.

The Name above all names.

The only one we need . . .


Our Savior.

Will you praise His Holy Name today?

Please, pray with me:
Thank you, Father, for sending your Son, Jesus, to save us from our sins. In knowing and following Him, we know You and follow Your will for our lives. May our knees bow and tongues confess that Jesus is Lord. Amen.

Psalms 103 or 148
Isaiah 62:1-5, 10-12
Revelation 19:11-16
Matthew 1:18-25


  1. You're a few days ahead to the Feast Martha but it would be wonderful to reflect on it now :)

    I agree that names are very important. My Italian friend once told me that Filipinos are very friendly and would even exchange names with strangers on a first day basis. But isn't it wonderful that God knows each one of us by our very own name?

    And His' is a name we proclaim not only in words but by our very own heart and actions.

    I pray with you...

  2. Hi, Melissa! Happy New Year and thanks so much for stopping by!
    Yes, isn't it marvelous that our God know each and every one of us by name? I find it so humbling when I think the Lord of the Universe cares about us all individually. Simply amazing!
    Thank you for praying with me . . .
    Wishing you God's mighty blessings!

  3. It is a fad now a days to be called by nick names or shortening one's name to sound name is janaki shortened to Janu it also means 'life' I purposely named my kids with short names so that they cannot be shortened further...but, they are already shortened.:-)

  4. Hi, Janu, and thanks so much for coming by today!

    Oh, I love the meaning of your name - life. What could be better than that? :)
    Giving your children short names was a great move. We struggled with keeping my son "Daniel" as everyone wanted to shorten to "Dan" or "Danny". I think it's a natural tendency in us.

    Many blessings in the new year, my friend!

  5. Names are so important and there is no better way to feel close to someone than to recognize that they remember our name. So it is doubly significant that God knows us each by name. Of course why wouldn't he? He created us and just as we would never forget our children's names so he never forgets ours. Great post Martha. Next time I see Danny, I'm calling him... Dionimo!

  6. Thanks so much for stopping by, Lynne!

    Whenever I think of God knowing us each by name, I am both awed and humbled. How great is our God!

    And, I can't wait to see Danny's face when you call him by his "real" name! :)

    Blessings always!

  7. True what you have said, there is much in a name. I have always been one to give nick names to people close to me. It's not on purpose, it just happens in the course of the relationship. I picked this habit up from my dad who did the same. My dad believed as you do, that God remembers each of his children. His faith was strong. Thank you, Martha for reminding me of my dad. He's left us a five years ago to live with his God, talk poetry, sing a few cowboy songs, and consider the mystery of life.

  8. One thing I always find myself wishing, is that when the Bible was translated, we would have carried His name over correctly. The Hebrew language doesn't even use the sound of J. When I pray in His Name I use the Name closest to what I understand it to be, but how oh how I wish I knew exactly (to the inflection) what His mother called Him. (Victoria Jenkins)

  9. Hi, Brenda and Victoria! Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving such excellent comments!
    @Brenda - Giving nicknames to those close to you is, I believe, a way of showing deep affection for them. Your dad sounds like he was a wonderful, loving man, faithful to God in all things. I'm glad this post brought back sweet, treasured memories for you. Isn't it comforting to know that you will see him again one day?
    @Victoria - Wouldn't that be marvelous to be able to call our Lord by the very name Mary used? I must admit, I have never thought about this before until you mentioned it here. You've made me want to know this now. One day, in Heaven, all will be revealed . . .

    Blessings to you both and a very happy new year!

  10. Smitty is used quite often by co-workers based upon my last name while others call me Dave or Davy. I prefer my given name David but will answer to any of the above. 125 names is alot to remember, I'd probably have to use a cheatshee for awhile. Whatever title attached to God is irrevelant as he's glorious in everything he does!! Happy New Year!!!


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