Good evening! I should be landing in Saigon in about twelve hours after a layover in Singapore. Tonight's entry is by a man I really admire. Mark Hall is one of the elders of my congregation and along with his lovely wife, Susan, a great supporter of my mission to Vietnam. I know you'll be touched by his very personal story!
I am one of 7 children. Our youngest sibling is Shawna, who married right out of high-school, never went to college, and began at a young age being a wife, a mother of 3, and working various jobs to help her family make ends meet. Although Shawna has always been very spiritually minded, her marriage didn’t go as she had hoped for and a few years ago she divorced her husband. Her children are grown and gone and so she decided to finish her bachelor’s degree that she started 10 years ago, and she completed it in May of this year. In July, she is going to sell her car and move to Chicago to attend North Park University Seminary to pursue a Master’s Degree in Christian Formation. I admire the faith of an older, single woman, that spent most of her life in West Texas/New Mexico/Colorado raising children; striking out to live in a large urban area, without a job, without a car for the first time in her life, and pursuing a master’s degree that she may not finish until age 50.
Another interesting thing about this woman, is that to mark this change in her life, she has changed her last name. Not back to her maiden name, but to a whole new name that she created, which is Hart. The Ha comes from Hall, the family that she came from, R is from her married family name, and the letter ‘t’ is the sign of the cross to honor her place in God’s family.
In some cultures a person’s name is not given until they are old enough that their character and personality can be incorporated into their name.
Although name changing to mark a significant change in life is somewhat unusual now days, it’s something that God thinks is good, because He changed Abram to Abraham, Sara to Sarah, Jacob to Israel, and Simon to Peter to mark changes He made in their lives.
If people that know you were choosing a new name for you, what would it be? If you were choosing a new name for yourself what would it be? If God chose a new name for you what would it be?
Proverbs 22:1 (NKJV)
A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches, . . .
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