Monday, May 26, 2014

The Name

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For the longest time, I didn't like my name. I didn't want to be different or unique. I just wanted to fit in. And with a name like mine, it took forever for people to remember it and even longer for them to spell it right. I got so tired of correcting the butchering of my name, I eventually learned to respond to all the variations of ways of saying it wrong.

Then, one day, out of desperation, I prayed that the Lord would help me like my name. A name matters. It helps define who you are. 

It wasn't long after that I Googled my own name:


I clicked "search" and was blown away by what I found.

There are other Chandas who have the same problem as me. Here are some of their comments:

"I love my name. Now. As an adult. As a child, I HATED my name. Mostly I hated the spelling and wanted to change the spelling to Shanda. I do have people call me Chandra A LOT. I don't know how that "r" gets in there. And I have to explain how to pronounce it quite often. I use Chanda, like chandelier. That works for most people."
"I love my name, but NOONE EVER pronounces it correctly...It is always annoying that noone can ever pronounce it or spell it. they always put in an "R" or make it sound like shonda."

It was good to know there were other Chandas out there, who had to tell people to think of "chandelier" or who didn't like their name, either. Now for the meaning of my name.

One site said:

fierce, hot, passionate.

The only thing hot was my face from the sudden impact of embarrassment. I can on occassion be a bit zealous when I believe there is some sort of injustice in the world, but I don't really think that definition fits me. Most of my friends and family would stifle a laugh if I told them that's what my name means.

Another site said:

From the Sanskrit candra meaning ‘pleasant’,‘shining’, ‘moon’.

Source: Dictionary of American Family Names ©2013, Oxford University Press




I liked that meaning better. And the moon is a reflection of a greater source of light. The sun.

That made my heart happy. The moon is like a picture of those who follow Christ. He is the source of light, love, and truth and we reflect Him to the world.

Names are important not only to ourselves, but to others. When you hear a person's name, you automatically connect it to a face, a person, a character.

It is the same with God.

God did not tell us His name until the crescendo leading up to the birth of Christ.

Before Christ came, to be able to call God by His name was something foreign, even frightening for the Jews. He was Lord. Adonai. Elohim. YHWH. The Great I Am. But, I Am who?

Through the days, years, centuries, millenia, from Abraham on, the name of God was a mystery.

Then Christ came into the world. He came to His own (the Jews), but His own did not receive Him (John 1:9,10).

He claimed to be God's own Son. Equating Himself with God. Those who didn't believe Him called Him blasphemer.

To be called a blasphemer was punishable by death. And, that's just what they did. They killed Him on a cross. They did not want this Someone who claimed He was God to even live. Someone with a name. That would make His name, God's name. It was beyond comprehension.

But, to take that leap of faith. To take the plunge into the kingdom of God changes everything. And it's all in a name. The name of Christ Jesus. 

The only One who lived and died and lived again.

And when we put our trust in Him, He gives us a new name.

Child of God.

That is by far the favorite name given to me.

But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. JOHN 1:12,13