Have you noticed that there are some names that bring a pleasant emotion when you hear them, while others bring a feeling of negativity? Remember the bully in middle school? The kid who drove to school, had peach fuzz on his face and always seemed to have a wad of big league chew in his mouth? Would you ever consider giving your child his name? NO! Because he has a bad name – a name that brings stress, frustration, and an array of bad feelings. Next, think of a person who unquestionably loves you and communicates it faithfully. Maybe it’s a parent or a significant other. Hearing their name brings peace and joy – and a myriad of positive emotions. They have a good name.
The emotions that follow a person’s name are the sum total of the residual effects that this person has had on you over the years. This is their name. But remember, a name is less like a resume developed and more like an emotion conveyed.
While there isn’t much we can do to affect the way people treat us, there is much we can do to change how we treat people. In other words, we have no power to change the “name” of others- but we have remarkable power over our own!
Here are some things to consider:
- Take inventory on what causes someone to have a good name.
- Write a list of practical ways people have treated you that cause you to have a pleasant response to their name.
- Consider ways you can replicate their behavior in a way that is consistent and authentic in your own life.
Developing a good name is a worthy endeavor. King Solomon wrote – Proverbs 22:1 (ESV)
A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches, and favor is better than silver or gold.