Ask any new parent about the importance of a name and they’ll probably gush with the story of how they picked out what to call their little bundle of joy. Throughout the Bible, names are super-significant. They usually tell us about that person’s character and identity, with Jesus Christ being the best example: Jesus - ‘God is our Saviour’; Christ - ‘the Anointed One’.
But in Ruth, we read about a woman who decided on a name change for the worse. Naomi lost her husband and, later on, both of her sons. She went from Naomi, meaning ‘my joy’ or ‘pleasant’ to Mara, meaning ‘bitter’. She let her circumstances define her when in reality there were still loads of things in store for Naomi - including mentoring Ruth who would ultimately become an ancestor of Jesus Christ himself! Sadly, Naomi let pessimism into the driver’s seat of her life. It strangled hope within her.
Don’t let that happen to you. If things around you are changing, embrace the change and roll with it. God’s still in control and still has things in store for you too. We might think we’ve got our life nailed down but God’s got an uncanny way of surprising us with what we never thought possible. So instead of having a Mara mentality, let God have His way: ‘By His mighty power at work within us, He is able to accomplish infinitely more than we would ever dare to ask or hope’ (Ephesians 3:20-21 NLT).
“Live one moment at a time and that moment for God. Don’t think of a holy life for that will overwhelm you by its immensity. Remember that a holy life is a series of holy moments.”—Source Unknown (via veropr)
“There is a way of ordering our mental life on more than one level at once. On one level we may be thinking, discussing, seeing, calculating, meeting all the demands of external affairs. But deep within, behind the scenes, at a profounder level, we may also be in prayer and adoration, song and worship, and a gentle receptiveness to divine breathings.”—Thomas Kelly (via rhworship)