Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Pregnancy Care Center

One of the many great ministries going on in our community is the Pregnancy Care Center. I have such respect and appreciation for the work they are doing to influence the cause of Christ in our city.

The statistics are staggering about the number of people who make uninformed decisions before they abort a pregnancy. Many people have come to know about Jesus through the ministry of love.

I am thankful and prayerful today because I have been asked to be a part of a Strategic Planning Committee. The PCC has determined that it is time to intentionally think about how to impact young women and men who are making decisions that surround an unplanned pregnancy. I look forward to reporting here on the progress of that team and ask for your prayers as we seek direction and guidance. Our first meeting is tomorrow at 11:00.

I have been blessed in so many ways over the last 5 years to have known those who are working so tirelessly in this effort. May God grant a vision that is so great only he can accommplish it.

You can check out the website for the Pregnancy Care Center here.


Sunday, April 1, 2007

What is in a Name?

Regard your good name as the richest jewel you can possibly be possessed of - for credit is like fire; when once you have kindled it you may easily preserve it, but if you once extinguish it, you will find it an arduous task to rekindle it again. The way to gain a good reputation is to endeavor to be what you desire to appear.
Greek philosopher in Athens (469 BC - 399 BC)

"What's in a name? That which we call a roseBy any other word would smell as sweet."
Juliet -from the Play Romeo and Juliet

"A good name is more desirable than great riches; to be esteemed is better than silver or gold."
Proverbs 22:1 NIV

There is so much in a name. Names tell us a lot about people. What family they are a part of, what there family heritage is, what part of the country/world they were born in and more.

I've always been fascinated with names. Two things that I love are when a couple marries and the women adopts her husbands' name and I love nicknames. I love the name change that happens at marriage because of all that it communicates. I think this only further communicates the picture of "two becoming one" that Scripture speaks of. I have grown to love nicknames partially because they help me remember people names, which is something I try hard to do, but also because nicknames often will communicate a closeness in two people's relationship. These nicknames are often developed through time that we spend with that friend. You would not call a total stranger by a nickname that had never heard before. He would likely address them with more caution until you knew that person better. (of course this rule doesn't apply if the person is famous or only goes by one name - e.g. -Shaq, Tmac, Madonna, Prince, etc. All of these people go by first name or nickname and the whole world knows them this way.)

Scripture is also full of situations where a baby is given a name that has great meaning (Moses, Jesus, Jacob and Esau, etc.) Or like Paul and Peter there names are changed after they begin to follow Jesus. Names are full of life, meaning, and significance.

A name that is good is the most valuable treasure a person can have. More valuable than any wealth or money that can be attained in life. When we were choosing names for our children it was a big ordeal because we wanted to pick a name we thought fit perfectly.

Thinking about names leads me to also think about God's name. Throughout Scripture God is referred to in a number of different ways. Savior, Rock, Redeemer, Ancient of Days, Creator, Maker, Defender, Horn of our Salvation, Refuge, Fotress, Strong Tower, Lord, and Holy One just to name a few.

Just like names we have for one another or people who are famous much can also be learned about God when we look at His names. Various things can be known and understood about God's character and nature based on how one might refer to Him. When we encounter different situations in life sometimes we need something more than the name God. Maybe something else is more appropriate. Ultimately, I think that knowing God means knowing His names. Do you know Him well enough to call him by name?

Praise be to God our Father-whose name is full of height and depth and love and significance. Whose name never changes. Praise be to Your Name.
What name of God do you best identify with?

Do you have a hard time referring to Him in certain ways?

Do you think it helps us understand more about Him by knowing a particular name?