The Name We Wear

customer-names-cloudmapA good name is better than precious ointment, and the day of death than the day of one’s birth. (Ecclesiastes 7:1)

The Name We Wear

We did not choose the name we wear. Our parents made the decision to name us according to many reasons: family ties, popularity, novelty, friendship and creativity. Our name is the one constant that identifies everything about us. A few words put together in a sentence describe our personality, our reputation and our life. We carry it with us throughout life and at the end of life all that remains is a name on a marble stone. A name with two dates with a small dash in the middle is all that is left. Loved ones will recall us by our name; friends will miss us by our name.

Our name is very fragile. It will remain in the chronicles of man throughout the ages but while we are living, it is most brittle. As we grow from childhood, our name is precious reflecting the innocent spirit of youth. When we enter adulthood, our name takes on a more impactful meaning as we become identified with the character we have molded. The name given by our parents was given in a time of innocence but now we must be careful to maintain the goodness of our name as intended from the beginning. This is very difficult. A lifetime of nobility ascribed to our name can be wiped out by a moment’s reckless folly. Now our name takes on a remembrance of a foolish decision or reckless choices that besmear a once good name. A good name is given in faith and we are entrusted to keep that good name.

When death calls what remains is our name. A good name is to be valued more than anything in this world because it becomes the novel of our lives. When our name is spoken there will be good things said or evil. How that name is spoken will be in the manner we left our name in death. Stains upon our name may never fully recover. The exhortation of the wisdom literature is to implore all of us to live in such a way to leave a good name after our death. The house of mourning is about our name being lifted up or cast down.

Eternity will be established by our name. Beyond the vale of life there is a book called the Book of Life. It is held in the hand of God and inscribed in this book are names. These names are the only names that allowed through the gates of eternal life. Many names will never be inscribed there because those names have never named the Son of God as Redeemer. There are some names written upon its pages that have been blotted out. Knowing the saving grace of the Father the names have turned back into the world. Those names that remain are the redeemed. They will hear their names called and told to enter into life eternal. The final judgment is about our name. In the infinite mercy of God, there is forgiveness for names stained with sin. Some names may be held in derision by the world but are held precious by the blood of Jesus because they have been forgiven. No greater joy is there to know that God will take my name and forgive me of my sins. Thank you God for Your love. A good name is more precious than anything we can ever own.

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