Saturday, September 24, 2011



If you were to encounter someone with this name, how would you pronounce it?

"Leah?" .... Nope.

"Lei?" .... Uh-uh.

Give up yet?

The correct pronunciation is (drum roll please), "Ledasha!"

Yup. Ledasha. This is a story that supposedly originated from a student in Louisiana who went by this name. According to an account that I heard, her mom stormed into the school that Ledasha went to and starting ranting and raving about how they couldn't pronounce her daughter's name right. The dash symbol in her name isn't silent, apparently. I started cracking up when I heard this story, for the sheer ridiculousness of the situation, but it brings up an important point:

Names are a huge part of our identity.

Embedded into every human being is this idea of being tied to his own name. People's identities are closely interlinked with their names. This is kinda silly, but I know someone named Peaches, and if you knew him, you would understand why his name is Peaches. But when I look at him, I think of Peaches, not David. (his real name)

God is well aware of this fact. In fact, He's been known to change people's names on several occasions. Take a look at Peter. His name was originally Simon, and upon His first meeting with him, Jesus calls him Peter, which means "the rock."(John 1:42) I believe He did this in order to point to the steadfastness that he was to mature into.

Or Abram and Sarai. Upon their encounter with God, they were renamed to Abraham and Sarah, which mean "the father of many," and "princess," respectively. He gives them personal names signifying the things He plans for them. (Gen. 17)

Or how about Jacob? The dude wrestled with an angel and was given the name "Israel" as a blessing for his persistence. The name means, "He has striven with God." It is this name that God designated not only for Jacob, but for the entire nation of His chosen people.

So my point in saying all of this is something I want to make clear:

After an encounter with God, our names are often changed.

Remember what I said about identity being tied to names? Well, the entire point of a name-change is to point to an inner change that happens in the heart. Every time God changed a name in the Bible, it pointed to a new direction the person was headed. Now, I'm not sure how it all works, but I think many of us need to start asking God what our new Kingdom Names are. Not to just have a new name, but to discover what direction He wants us going in. So let me ask:

What's your name?


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