Deciding what to name a child can be challenging. I’ve passed the stage of needing to think about naming babies. Instead, I’m faced with what to name a character in a book, and that too can prove challenging.
When a character enters a scene, the person’s name usually pops in my head at the same time. However, before accepting this moniker as the appropriate tag for the person, I do a little research just to make sure it isn’t the name of a celebrity or a politician or some other famous person.
I also want a villain’s name to sound . . . well . . . villainous, and a strong character to have a strong sounding name. Think “Rocky” and you get the picture.
The Bible is full of great names for both babies and characters. These are names that have been around for thousands of years, and have quite literally stood the test of time. But, there are many “one time use” names in the Bible as well.
For instance, in the book of Hosea, God instructs a prophet to name his daughter “No Mercy” (Hosea 1:6). The son who came later was named “Not My People” (Hosea 1:9). The Hebrew names Lo-ruhama and Lo-ammi never quite caught on as popular names for offspring, but those names portrayed the message God was endeavoring to send His people at that time.
In the book of Ruth, a widow named Naomi, who also lost two sons, decided she wanted to be called Bitter. The Hebrew word was mara, and she wanted her name changed to Mara because she said, “the Almighty has dealt bitterly with me” (Ruth 1:20).
If you wanted a name to reflect how God has dealt with you, what would you call yourself? Mine would be blessed. Just call me Blessed.
All of us have a desire to be happy, but happiness can mean different things to different people.
Some equate being happy with having pleasure, but, while having pleasurable moments can certainly add to an overall feeling of happiness, pursuing pleasure as a way of achieving happiness will ultimately fail. Just ask anyone who’s tried it, from the adulterer to the drug addict. Their stories, so full of heartache, sorrow, and loss, never paint a picture of happiness.
If having pleasure isn’t an adequate definition of happiness, then what is? Christian theologian, R. C. Sproul, in a recent blog article, defined happiness as “the state of inner delight, blessedness, and contentment.”
I would agree with this definition because I believe true happiness can only be found in the presence of God, and this is where we find our delight, feel most blessed, and know contentment.
Psalm 4:7 “You have put more joy in my heart than they have when their grain and wine abound.”
Psalm 16:11 “You have made known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.”
How can you be the happiest person on earth? Instead of pursuing pleasure, pursue His presence.