It was a long time ago. All my brother and I could remember of the moment was my friend’s face at our car window. Someone must have doubted that his name was what he said he was, and he came to me to settle the matter. “Aren’t I Pookey?” he asked, confident of my confirmation.
Pookey. Pookey Edwards. I don’t remember your other name, but yes, you are indeed Pookey and apparently proud of it.
It’s important to know who we are.
In her book, One Thousand Gifts, Ann Voskamp explores the wonder of naming things—how putting words to something you might have otherwise overlooked, makes the “invisible become visible.” I linger over the quote she takes from Alexander Schemann: “ Now in the Bible a name . . . reveals the essence of a thing . . . To name a thing is to manifest the meaning and value God gave it. . . to know its place and function within the cosmos created by God.”
Adam named the animals.
God changed the names of his chosen ones to reflect their new nature with Him.
God revealed himself through His names.
Jesus gave me new name—no longer child of wrath but child of God.
Sometimes I forget. I let testy relationships or mucky responses convince me I am not who He says I am. I run to Him in the early morning hours and look for His confirmation, “Aren’t I Pookey?” Your daughter, your loved one, mucky and testy regardless.
And because He is who He says He is, I find comfort.
Each year I ask the Lord to reveal something of Himself to me through one of His names. Always, I hold Creator close to my heart because of the awe and wonder and worship His creation inspires, but over the years He has emphasized different aspects of His relationship with me. The first name He revealed to me personally as I sat desperate, penniless, homeless, in a church basement, was I AM.
That year I learned He is indeed I AM –all that you need or desire. I AM GOD.
Another year, at a time of frustration with myself and everyone else around me, I ran off to a lonely hillside to host a pity party and He revealed Himself as The Living One Who Sees Me.
This year I am asking for a deeper knowledge of Him. I will watch and wait and expect to hear Him flood my heart with His chosen name with which He will draw me into a closer relationship.
And I pray that the turn of year brings you, friend who has lingered here, a renewed, a restored, a refreshed understanding of who you are because you see more clearly who He is. May you hear the name He whispers over you.