A Glorious Name

All throughout the Bible, God names people, and God changes people’s names. Abram to Abraham, Jacob to Israel, Sari to Sarah, John the Baptist, Gomer’s children, even the names given to Jesus. Good or bad. Rachel on her deathbed named her newborn, Ben-Oni, son of my trouble. Thankfully, dad stepped in and named him Benjamin, son of my right hand. What a difference a name makes.

So the Lord loves names. Why? Because God uses names to describe and explain himself. Names are forms of identification. What’s in a name? Everything when you are talking about God.

So, when my friend John Dee prayed over us a blessing that the power of God be revealed and that there be a release of gifts, and new names, I was intrigued and a little clueless.

After the prayer I asked John, “what is that? A new name?”

And in true John Dee fashion, he told me to go to Jesus and the Word and see what I found. I started digging in Scripture and it is very frequent. In fact, commonplace. It is everywhere. I will name you, I will call you. And there is specific Scripture about God giving us new names. Lots of Scripture. Here is one:

“You will be called by a new name that the mouth of the Lord will bestow.” Isaiah 62:2

So I asked Him to tell me my name. I knew how important it was to me for my children. I am His child, so it stands to reason my name is important to Him. So I asked. Simple as that. Then I waited.

And the day it came, I just sat there. This is a little too close to my heart for public consumption. But I want to tell you how amazing it is when the Living God gives you a name. In true fashion for me, I didn’t believe I had heard Him right.

I asked Him to tell me again so I could be sure it was Him. The Lord was really good about it. He did. Over and over.

Guess what? The Lord does not stutter.

Now a couple of years have passed and I have watched the Lord reveal himself in amazing ways through a given name. People are always dumbfounded. Here are some names the Lord has given in lots of different ways to people I know personally.

Sought After, Butterfly, Faithful, Doxa, Repairer of Broken Walls, Sunshine, Pearl.

These are all real people with real encounters with a Real God.

Every one of these people scratched their head and said, Huh? Me? But the Lord used the name to drive deep truth down in their soul. If I told you these names were given to people who struggled with being victims of child abuse, infidelity, promiscuity, rejection, worthlessness, would you be able to connect the dots? All they could see was pain and struggle and hurt. And then God says, “Wait just a minute. This is who I see. This is who you really are.

It brings the promises of God to a whole new level. “The one who calls you is faithful. He will do it.”

Now what does this have to do with my glory, your glory?

We are settling for crumbs when we can have a feast. God is offering us a lot more than we are taking. We are settling for churchianity instead of intimacy. We are settling for stereotypes in and out of the church instead of being defined by the Creator. We are bickering over roles when God is calling us to be warriors for the Kingdom of God.

I am my Beloved’s and His desire is toward me.

I am my Beloved’s and He is mine.

I know who I am and whose I am and He is fully taken with me. He is the Beholder. He is the Author, the Finisher. He is the only one who matters. He is my all in all. He is the Lover that I have always longed for. He is the Source. He is the Redeemer.

In my language He is the Curse Breaker.

He is my satisfaction so that out of this overflow, my relationship to everyone else is changed. My marriage is different because Jesus has my heart. My parenting is different because Jesus has my heart. Everything flows from His source, instead of me trying to scramble around to grab some affirmation here and approval there, definition here and fighting for this or that.

And in an unusual God-like way, this knowledge helped me to be more of a woman. I stepped off the False Woman spectrum. No more bouncing between the Trophy and Invisible Woman. I am free to express my glory, my womanhood without all the fear of rejection.

I can trust the Lord to lead and define and defend me. He said, His gifts and callings are irrevocable. I believe Him.

Understanding God’s glory in me has changed my whole perspective about everything, everyone.

I told a room of 20-something year old women that it feels like Jesus has washed my face; He has carefully but intently scrubbed off the lies and heartache and rejection caked on my face, and then rinsed it with His living water, and with my face cupped gently in His hands, He smiles and whispers, “Oh, there you are.”

Excerpt taken from Unhindered, Chapter 50

Let’s Get Real Here:

How do you think your thoughts about you would change if you heard what the Lord God Almighty called you? Why don’t ask Him? What’s your new name?

Zim Prayer: June 7 – June 11

Here’s what’s going on with the Zim team this week:

Monday, June 7

Sonoia Primary School

Tara speaks

“You are Special” skit

Fun songs

Chengatenai (Nursing Home)

Team sings and visits

Laura and Randy share testimonies

Good Shepherd Orphanage

Team share devotionals with the kids –

Alex and Spencer – younger boys 5-14

Randy and Tyler – older boys 15-20

Anna and Tara – girls 4-10

Jana, Beth, and Salem – girls 11-15

Lara and Laura – girls 16-23

Wednesday, June 9

Team leaves early for the Harare market

Thursday, June 10

Team flys out towards Knoxville, 12:30 PM (Zim time)

Friday, June 11

Team arrives home at 6:38 PM (Knox time)

Zim Prayer: May 31 – June 6

Okay, prayer warriors!  Here are the Zim highlights for this week.

Monday May 31 – Thursday, June 3

The team will be on a houseboat in Kariba.  This will be their down time for fun, seeing wild life, and also processing what the Lord has been doing.

Friday, June 4

Team returns to Chinhoyi Friday morning

Chinhoyi Youth Meeting (Friday night)

Jana speaks

Team does skit

Spencer and Lara share testimonies

Saturday, June 5

Good Shepherd Orphanage – time with kids, hand out letters, pictures taken

Tara and Anna – leading a craft

Salem and Beth – playing games with the younger kids

Sunday, June 6

Chinhoyi High School

Tyler speaking

Team does skit

Alex and Randy share testimonies

Lomgundi College

Team shares cardboard testimonies

Jana speaks

Zim Prayer: May 24 – May 30

Here are some of the highlights to be praying for the Zim team over this power-packed week:

Monday, May 24 – Eiffel Flats

Tyler will be speaking and Anna will be sharing her testimony

Tuesday, May 25 – Women’s Bible Study

Jana will be speaking

Laura and Beth will be sharing their testimonies

Wednesday, May 26 or Thursday May 27

Kadoma Boarding School for kids with disabilities (this will depend on whether the cholera outbreak is over)

Laura will be leading fun kid songs

Friday, May 28

Camp activities, Construction at Lasting Impressions

Saturday, May 29

The team travels to Karoi

Jana speaks at Women’s conference

Sunday, May 30

Dutch Reformed Church

John speaks

Team does a skit

Songs by Jana or Laura

Afternoon tea; Sue speaks

Will You Help Us Change the World?

Isn’t that an audacious question? It sounds like, uhm, let me think — oh yes, it sounds like Jesus. He is the One who took a handful of scarred and frail believers and changed the course of history.  Their encounter with the Living Messiah, their passion to tell their story about Him, changed the world, one person at a time.

That is what we are up to at Women Getting Real. Our desire is to rescue people from the heartache, lies and defeat in their lives and lead them into the presence of the Loving God where He can restore, renew and heal. Are we there yet ourselves? Nope. We are all in process, on the journey, ever seeking His face. But this one thing we know and bank our lives on: the same God who is healing us, will heal others too.

We believe that the same tender love, the same Living God who has radically altered our lives, altogether changed our existence not only in the hereafter but also with His overwhelming presence in our daily lives, is able and willing to do that for others too.  And we want to tell our stories, now and later, near and far, home and abroad.

Will you help us with this Holy Search and Rescue Mission?

There are four of us going to Zimbabwe in May. I am going to teach retreats and teens. Two other “dream team” members of WGR are going, Beth Hungerford and Laura Jones.  They are invaluable leaders in the workings of Unhindered events, and behind the scenes work of the ministry. When they go to Zimbabwe they will be helping with the youth camps and orphanage there. The final representative from WGR is our youngest team member, Salem, my 12 year old daughter. She is a bundle of gifting: child magnet, willing builder and adventurer extraordinaire.  God was so clear to us all that she was to make this trip. So we are quite eager to see all that God will reveal and deposit in her.

It is not so much what we offer, but that we have all been clearly, and almost humorously, Called. And we must answer. We are joining a larger team going with John Dee and Ebenezer Ministries and will be gone for three weeks. Does this sound crazy to you?  It still does to me. But isn’t that just like God? Nothing is impossible for Him.

So we are extending an invitation to you to link arms with us.  Will you pray for us?  Salem said it best. When I was helping her with her donor letters, I asked her what she wanted to put under her “prayer requests.”  She said,  “Preparation and faith.” I love that. That is our first step. Preparation and Faith. Our second step is to pray in the funds to go. We know that God has all the money we need. And He has given me such a verse:

And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. As it is written: “He has scattered abroad his gifts to the poor; His righteousness endures forever.” Now He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness. You will be made rich in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God.

2 Corinthians 9: 8-11

We stand on His promises to provide through many hands.. Will you  link arms with us financially too? Maybe you can’t go, but you can help send us.  You are going to Zimbabwe “through us”  as we all go through the power of Christ.

So if you want to join the Change the World adventure with us, click here.  This is will give you all the info you need to be part of this God work.

“Lord rend the heavens and come down, Seek the lost and heal the lame, Father bring glory to your name.”

Thoughts to Ponder

I have been pondering the daily of living.  About how we get sucked dry, sucked into drama, suckered by distractions instead of Living full out in our strengths.  My favorite Bible teacher, John Dee, calls it reality with a little “r”, as opposed to God Reality with a big “R.”  He says that the Big R is much more real than the little r.  So I want to be conscious of that and press into God Reality without getting stopped by the daily junk. But how do we do that?

If we are not careful, we will become like hamsters on wheels trying to figure out how to do life full out and still get laundry done. (Can I get an “Amen, Sister”?)

Still there is a focused living that Jesus did so beautifully.  He knew what He was about. Um, that would be saving the world. Yet He was so connected to His Father, so empowered by the Holy Spirit, He didn’t have to freak out in the day to day. And when He got tired, He “withdrew to a solitary place to pray.”

Even as I write this, I know that is what I need.  Time with God.  Nothing will bring more big R Reality to my life that time in His presence. How about you? What reality are you living in today?

I’m off to find a solitary place, right in the middle of my daily drama. Come Lord Jesus.