We have the name–Christian. While name-dropping to add something we don’t own or remove something we do from our surname, what about our Christian name. My friend, life’s a story, stayed tuned for more on This Passing Day.
Name-dropping–many of us are guilty of this secret little pleasure. I met a couple of famous people in my lifetime and have fallen prey to the urge to drop their names in conversation on occasion. “I once met so-and-so, and they told me this or they shook my hand.” I confess. I have been guilty. I think we all do it at times. Why? Perhaps it’s because we aren’t comfortable in our own skin, suffer from an anxious nature, or have doubts about our ability to stand on our own merits and talents? It’s human nature to be competitive. We meet with folks who have more power, prestige or influence than we do and we can easily fall into the name-dropping trap. While psychologists advocate that anyone caught up in the cycle of dropping names seeks help in developing a more acceptable level of self-confidence so as to avoid the habit of name-dropping to puff oneself up, is name-dropping always a bad thing? .
I believe that the greatest danger of name-dropping is the potential damage that it can do to our good name. When people sense that we are dropping names, we can easily acquire the label of braggart, perhaps even liar. Once associated, it’s very hard to clean up the damage.
Here’s a story. After the American Civil War the managers of the infamous Louisiana Lottery approached Robert E. Lee and asked if he’d let them use his name in their scheme. They promised that if he did he would become rich. The lottery, first of its kind in the U.S., sold tickets nationwide. The top prize was $4,275.25. The owners of the company worked out an arrangement with Louisiana state government. In exchange for donating a comparatively small sum of $40,000 a year for 25 years to the Charity Hospital of New Orleans, the Company kept the rest of their revenues, tax-free. It was scandalous. Amid state and national charges of corruption 22 years later, the company shut down. Lee, always a man led by ethics and principle, was astounded. He stared at the Louisiana Lottery agents, straightened up, buttoned his gray coat, and shouted, “Gentlemen, I lost my home in the war. I lost my fortune in the war. I lost everything except my name. My name is not for sale, and if you fellows don’t get out of here, I’ll break this crutch over year heads!” (Source Unknown.)
Apart from surname, you and I have an even better good name–Christian. While name-dropping to add something we don’t own or remove something we do from our surname, has its hazards, what about our Christian name. I believe that this is an altogether different situation. If Mark Brunner wants to be puffed up by making believe he knows so-and-so or is close to this person or that, I do so at my own risk of being proved a braggart. Name-dropping can backfire when I don’t come off as believable or begin to paint a picture of insincerity. However, there’s one relationship we do want others to believe we have; that’s the relationship we have personally with Jesus Christ, the Son of the Living God. Here’s the amazing thing about dropping the name of Jesus. It works every time we drop it with God. While name-dropping may do little for the relationship we are attempting to build with someone we admire, it does have significant impact on the relationship each of us ought to be building with our Heavenly Father. Scriptures tell us that whatever we ask in Jesus name, he will present our petition directly to God. Talk about name dropping? It’s the ultimate person of power and prestige to know and we are dropping his name in front of the greatest power of the universe. When was the last time you dropped the name of Jesus Christ to God? His name is for sale. Really, it’s the only one that is.
We pray. Thank you Lord for allowing us to come into your presence through the name of Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord. Forgive us Father when we neglect to use his name as we come into your presence in prayer, because it is the only name, when dropped with you, that grants us the authority of your forgiveness and grace. May we always pursue the name of Jesus Christ in prayer with faithfulness and boldness. In Jesus name we pray. Amen!
Therefore my friend, Do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry for itself; each day has enough trouble of its own. This Passing Day. (Matt 6:34)
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