“I have called you by name – you are mine!” (Isaiah 43:1)
I am so grateful that God’s Word tells us that we are not lost when hidden in Him. We are not insignificant in His eyes that behold us with immeasurable love and we are not nameless! In fact, we are called by name – by His name forever! But in the midst of these amazing truths, we certainly can feel lost, insignificant and nameless at times can’t we!
This week, I have experienced a taste of what it means to live in one of the world’s biggest cities and to feel displaced in a crowd of millions. Thousands of nameless faces have flitted before my eyes and I have gazed on thousands of names at the 9/11 Memorial that are faceless to me. It is all pretty overwhelming and I find myself remembering days when I felt spiritually lost, insignificant and nameless throughout our desperate trial.
A few months into Beth’s illness, as I woke up through the daze of the scary dawn of a new morning, I was wondering if the Lord had even noticed our pain. Suddenly, a voice seemed to whisper a call to my spirit, “Beautiful joy watch and pray… BEAUTIFUL JOY WATCH AND PRAY!” As I contemplated, a new realization hit. This call was my name! My full name, Lynda, is of Spanish origin and means ‘beautiful’. My middle name, Joy, is one that I share with all my three girls. I have written in this week’s chapter of Heartbreakingly Beautiful that our family name means ‘Watch and Pray’. So that day, as I pondered some more over this new thought that kept speaking to me, I sensed that this was in fact a comfort and a command from the Lord. He was calling me by my name to do what He had created me to be and to do. It was like He was saying to my hurting heart; “My beautiful Lynda, Joy of My heart –I notice you and know everything about you. You are not lost or forgotten. You are not insignificant. You are called by name. Run to Me, come watch and pray with Me.”
As soon as I was able, I shared this with David and we began to go through the names of the rest of the family. David’s name means ‘beloved brother’ (and how perfectly this suits him). We prayed together that God would indeed give us the grace to live up to our names and all He created us to be and to do through this time. We shared this idea with all our children, praying over each of them and their respective names and reputations – WOW! They really took hold of it and to this day take this as a word from the Lord to them too. Our Bethany Joy sure lived up to her name in more ways than one as she became a ‘house full of fruit and joy’. James Jordan, Rachael Anne Joy and Nicole Joy are living up to theirs too – what a blessing!
I humbly thank Jesus that He has called me, and my family, by name. But I am even more grateful that His name is way above ours in every way! He is the only one who can truly live up to His name! Maybe you don’t feel your earthly name is even worth living up to. That’s OK. Your earthly name is important to your Heavenly Father who has ordained every day of your life. But do you realize that you are called by a Father who is to name you with an intimate name that you don’t even know about yet? (Revelation 2:17) As children of God through Jesus Christ, our true names are intricately woven together with His – we belong to Him!
So when tempted to feel lost, insignificant and nameless, please know that you too can BE Named and forever safe and significant in Him! “The name of the Lord is a strong and mighty tower. The righteous run into it and are saved.” Proverbs 18:10
A song to encourage you:
This song is one of my all time favorites…
Nameless by Jordan Worner
A book to build you up:
Praying the Names of Jesus by Ann Spangler