Monday, August 22, 2011

What other name?

Do you have a nickname?  Something a family member or friend calls you as a term of endearment or maybe even for a joke?

When I was growing up my sister called me Toad.  It was a natural progression really.  My name is Jodi.  Then sometimes in a hurry I would get called Jod.  Then naturally because my sister wanted to rattle my chain a little it became Toad.

I vividly remember the year I joined the ranks of our High School. In my city the High School was grade seven to twelve.  So when I came in my seventh year, my sister was already quite familiar with the ins and outs of the school as a grade niner.  When the bell rang in between classes it was mayhem.  Thousands of students going this way and that way to get to their next room on time.  As a grade sevener it was overwhelming.

One day as I was trying to get from social to english I heard above the chatter and chaos,
"Hey Toad!  Look over here Toad!"

How embarrassing!  It was to late to pretend not to notice because not very many people look up at the mention of that name.  Well, I did and never lived it down for a very long time.

However, I had another nickname that I wanted to tell you about. It started towards the end of grade seven. My best friend and I wanted to be connected.  To become so connected that we would be inseparable.  So we renamed each other.  Her real name was Maurning (pronounced morning).  So she became Mojo and I became Jomo.  We stayed that way throughout our school careers.  The weird thing about all that is we haven't spoken since a year after graduation.  I can't even tell you what happened except we were no longer friends.  After six years of friendship where we had to name each other after the other ... it was over.

What does this have to do with anything?  Nothing really except it got me thinking about what names really mean to us.  My name has no cosmic or profound meaning and neither do my kids' names.  How important is it to you what a name means?

For my fictional characters, they come with their names already assigned.  At least the main ones do.  Sometimes I have to create a name for an insignificant player.  Usually I  go with what sounds neat.  However I am amazed at the end of a story how much the names suit the people on the page.

Is that a chicken and egg thing?

Like, do they become what the name suggests or do they get a name that will fit them perfectly?

Names are a funny thing, I think.  But there is one name that is not funny at all.

Jesus, the name above all names.

Think about that ... above every name ever invented, created or overused ... is his name.  I found a really neat site.  I am not vouching for the whole site - except the page I found.  (So don't hold me responsible!!)  It lists all the meanings of Jesus' name given in the bible.  It is cool.

His name doesn't just have one meaning.  And his name doesn't have a weird meaning.  Like mine which means 'from Johanna' or my personal favorite, "nickname for a female Joseph or Jude'. (Sounds like Toad might have been better after all.)

Instead Jesus' name has a multitude of meanings.  He is Prince of Peace, Lamb of God, Messiah, Deliverer, Immanuel, Blessed Redeemer, Holy One . . .

The name that stands above all other names.

What does his name mean to you?

At the bible camp I went to this summer we sang a song I had never heard before.  It quickly became my favorite.  I encouraged the kids at camp to do more than sing it.  Read it.  Pray it.  But most of all believe it.

You are good.  You are love.  You are light.  You are hope.  You are peace.  You are true.  You are joy.  You are life.  You are more.  You are Lord.  You are here. You are God.
My heart will sing, no other name, Jesus.
Is that the cry in your heart?  Do you know Jesus in all his forms? Is he your Lord?  Savior?  Redeemer?  Peace provider?  Friend?

While at camp I was challenged on so many levels to accept Him more.  To believe in Him more.  To trust Him more.  Now, I am running into his arms.

I cannot post the video here but I will put the link.  Please check it out.  The lyrics are below.  If I may, I would like to suggest that you don't watch the video.  Open it in a different window and listen to it play while you read the lyrics.  It is not about a performance - it is about a name.
A name that has the power to

  • heal you, 
  • correct your wayward choices, 
  • repair the broken places within you, 
  • strengthen you, 
  • empower you, 
  • uplift you, 
  • restore you 
  • atone for you
  • bless you
  • deliver you from all things
  • fill you with hope
  • give you a future
  • save you
  • sanctify you
  • rewire you
  • feed you
  • comfort you
  • and love you.

Forever Reign - by Hillsong
You are good, You are good
When there's nothing good in me
You are love, You are love
On display for all to see
You are light, You are light
When the darkness closes in
You are hope, You are hope
You have covered all my sin

You are peace, You are peace
When my fear is crippling
You are true, You are true
Even in my wandering
You are joy, You are joy
You're the reason that I sing
You are life, You are life,
In You death has lost it's sting

Oh, I'm running to your arms,
I'm running to arms
The riches of your love
Will always be enough
Nothing compares to Your embrace
Light of the world forever reign

You are more, You are more
Than my words will ever say
You are Lord, You are Lord
All creation will proclaim
You are here, You are here
In your presence I'm made whole
You are God, You are God
Of all else I'm letting go

Oh, I'm running to your arms
I'm running to arms
The riches of your love
Will always be enough
Nothing compares to Your embrace
Light of the world forever reign

My heart will sing
no other name
Jesus, Jesus

Oh, I'm running to your arms
I'm running to arms
The riches of your love
Will always be enough
Nothing compares to Your embrace
Light of the world forever reign

Credits :
songwriters: ingram, jason; morgan, ruben


  1. Wow, that's an amazing song...and I love the page that has Jesus' names! Thanks for challenging me to go deeper!

  2. Not sure if you meant it this way..the link to the song goes to the story behind the song. You can still get to the song by listening to that & then the link for the song comes up. Just thought I'd let you know in case it wasn't supposed to be that way:)

  3. Thanks Heidi! The link is fixed. I'm not sure how I managed that but that video was neat as well.
    Sorry to the other readers/watchers!