Have you ever wished you had a different name? I did, all throughout my childhood. My name meant “bitter”. Name meanings were always important to me and I did not like the fact that the only meaning I could ever find was negative. Three years ago the Lord began to deal with me about bitterness towards my husband and it was a wonderful time of forgiveness and reconciliation. I was involved in a discipleship program and in our study we had to look up the meaning of the word “Lord”. I couldn’t find my dictionary, so I waited to use my friends when we went over the study. She had a bible dictionary and we looked up “Lord”. She began to read and this is what it said, “Jesus was also addressed with the Aramaic mari (“lord”). That is from the Holman Bible Dictionary, page 890.
At 33 years of age I finally found a positive meaning for my name, but it wasn’t without a willingness on my part to be changed. The Lord brought the bitterness to my attention, but I had to be willing to surrender it to Him and allow Him to change my heart. My reward was a changed name (meaning) something I had deeply desired my whole life. He rewards obedience.
Like me, Jabez (1 Chron 4:9b) had a name that had a negative meaning. His name meant “he will cause pain”. He did not want that to be his destiny, so asked God that he not do what his name implied - Oh, that you would bless me indeed, And enlarge my territory, That your hand would be with me, And that You would keep me from evil, That I may not cause pain! (1 Chron 4:10, TNKJ)
"In the Bible, a name and the nature of the one who carries the name are linked to the destiny God intends for them. For Jabez the change he desired meant a transfusion of the will of God to supersede his mother's careless action when she named him at birth. In effect, God changed his name by changing his nature. From that point, the name Jabez was changed spiritually to mean--blessed! enlarged! and kept by God from evil and from causing pain!" - Shirley Weaver Ministries, A Clear Trumpet, Inc., Post Office Box 2720 . Mt. Pleasant, SC 29465.Copyright (C) 2000-2006 All rights reserved.
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