What's in a Name?
You know those little sticky labels that say, “Hello, my name is_________”? We often wear them when we are meeting new people. Well, those sticky little things have got me to thinking. Those labels should make introductions a breeze, right? Not so much. The truth is, people size us up within 7 teeny seconds, label or not…and its mostly non-verbal cues they pick-up on (forbes.com). Our label, our name… is deeper than what we scribble with a sharpie pen. So if we want someone to get to know us, we have to become more than what’s on that label…we have to know who we are, and whose we are.
Here’s an awesome video that captures what is in a name by Matthew West called Hello My Name Is.
The kinds of non-verbal cues we give have something to do with where we are in life. As I have learned, it has a great deal to do with beliefs (true or not) that we carry about ourselves. For me, that meant for a number of years I carried the label “abandoned.” I carried it because my parents divorced when I was two years old. I barely saw my father and when it came to my mom- I was a distant second to drugs, men, and alcohol. With my “label”, in those brief 7 seconds of meeting people, what they saw a painfully introverted and insecure young girl. To say it was hard to get past that when meeting me is an understatement. Throughout adolescence and well into my adult years new labels emerged. I was “undeserving” of a healthy relationship, “unworthy” of having a child, and a “sinner” who could never be saved.
It was in this cyclone of competing labels that My Creator continually whispered in my ear what my name truly is. Now please don’t get me wrong; I stumble a lot at listening and usually get the gift of learning things more than once. I’m just a regular chick, I mess up constantly…yep…I am a big, fat sinner! But you know what? God has never left my side. As for my label about not being worthy of saving? Yeah, well He took care of that for me too (Romans 3:24). One such example occurred when 5 years ago after miscarrying on Christmas night, I turned my back on God. I mean I got really got mad at God. I set out on a destruction path culminating in me trying to end my life a year later. But check THIS out…I woke up, and somehow my whole life, even in its upside-down state, was still intact. Whoa. There is no explanation for this other than, despite my best efforts to ruin my life, God stayed right there. My Father acknowledged my value. No longer a whisper, He shouted my TRUE name.
My label now might say something more like, “I am a child of God” (John 1:12), because I have the ultimate Father who imagined me into life. He knew everything about me before I was even born. My Father knitted me together; He loves me so much that every detail, every twist and turn was considered (Psalm 139:13-18). He makes no mistakes, he isn’t surprised by my shortcomings, I have a story to tell…and I have a life worth living. This isn’t to say I don’t struggle with taking a few wrong turns now and again. The difference is that today, there’s this little continuous well bubbling up inside of me that reminds me of my name, who I am at the core…and it has everything to do with The One who created me.
So when it comes to my label- I want to share that I am a hopeful, secure, loving, blessed, and a content woman today. You might ask yourself, how does one show that? How do I show everyone that I am a child of God? Over time, I have discovered that what people see is what we deliberately and thoughtfully choose to show of ourselves. So, that means living the design of life that God gave me (James 3:13-18). Speaking of James…for me personally, the entire book of James is the game plan for life. Here are just a few things I learned from James:
How to have faith under pressure 1:1-18
Love others, and show mercy 2:1-13
Live so others see you are different 3:13-18
Live like there’s no tomorrow 4: 13-15
In all things, PRAY! 5:13-18
You want to know the coolest thing about the bible? It’s no coincidence before even turning a page in the bible- our values are centered on the words in it. It proves He designed us. He wants us to see we are incredible, and that we have so many things at our disposal to create a label that glorifies His handiwork. So ask yourself…what does your label say? Does it do you justice? Does it glorify The One who created your amazing life? If it doesn’t, I’m living proof that its not too late to be the person your were always meant to be.
So wear your label boldly. It’s life changing. It’s freeing.
Author: Posh of Simply Posh Paper
Posh is a DIYer/crafter extraordinaire who honors the gifts her Creator gave her. Her search for fulfillment has led her to work as an administrative assistant at her church and expressing her talents in handmade cards and paper products with the hope she fulfills your search for the perfect card for your special occasion and the people you hold most dear. Posh writes this piece for the readers of Always, Sarah to encourage others to embrace their God-given label and to be free of worldly labels that can be daunting. Connect with Posh on her Etsy shop or on Instagram.