Yesterday morning at church, our pastor spoke about moms. It was so sweet. He said great stuff about the biblical importance of parents and the heritage we pass onto our children. He gave great honor to the fact that we as moms have a lot to do with our children’s spiritual growth and I really appreciated it. He encouraged us to do as Deuteronomy 6:5-9 tell us to do and talk about God with our kids when we sit at home, when we walk along the road, etc..wherever we go and whatever we do.
But…I go back and forth between how I feel about churches who talk about the things they are “supposed” to talk about from a societal/cultural perspective on certain days of the year. Maybe it’s the rebel in me….I always want to question my own conformity… When I worked at a church, there was a little part of me that always wanted to say “why should we?” and “why don’t we just not do that and do something different?”. I think fear motivates that stuff…but I’m digressing from what I really wanted to share with you! WHOOPS!
My mind was wondering a bit yesterday during the sermon. At first, I was listening..but I got lost in the passage of Scripture we were looking at and while I was lost…I found something that was so neat! I hope it is a thought you’ll pour over with great joy as I did.
The pastor was talking about Samson’s mother and the encounter she had with the Angel of the Lord when he came to her to tell her she would be pregnant and was going to have a son (she was unable to have children). [See Judges 13] I turned in my Bible to the account and started to read over it. Now, usually it’s just a little segment or a couple verses that are being used in the sermon; but being the gal that I am, I like to read the whole thing for context and because I catch stuff I would have otherwise missed.
So..there I am reading this encounter and I had a little laugh. The Angel of the Lord comes to Manoah’s wife (she’s nameless here) and tells her the good news. She runs back to tell her hubby. He is crazy excited but wants to know more and prays that the angel would come back so they can ask some more questions. (that really cracked me up by the way. isn’t that funny?) So God sends His angel back and he appears to Manoah’s wife again. She runs to get her husband and he comes out and starts to talk to the angel. But Manoah doesn’t seem to fully get it…that this is THE Angel of the Lord. So while he’s chatting with the Angel, he asks him in verse 17, “..Then Manoah asked the angel of the Lord, ‘What is your name? For when all this comes true, we want to honor you.'”
Ok,..this is the best part. Check out what the angel says in verse 18; ” ‘Why do you ask my name? the angel of the Lord replied. ‘It is too wonderful for you to understand.'”
At this point, I’m seriously giggling to myself. How funny that Manoah does not get what is going on. In the verses that follow, you’ll see that the comment the Angel made didn’t even shake Manoah a little. He REALLY did not get who he was talking to. But then I started to think about what a beautiful statement that is. “It is too wonderful for you to understand.”
Wow. His name was something so special that he held it to himself as something for just him and the Lord. So then I flipped back to my concordance and looked up ‘name’ and found that familiar verse in Revelation 2:17. (Go back and read the whole thing for context but I’m going to shorten it a bit picking up later in the verse) “…And I will give to each one a white stone, and on the stone will be engraved a new name that no one understands except the one who receives it.” WOW!
So here we have an Angel of the Lord who is telling Manoah that his name is so amazing and wonderful that he’s not even going to attempt to tell him what it is because he won’t get the meaning. And then we have Jesus saying that when this life is over, all the victorious in Christ will receive a stone from Him. And on that stone is a new name for us..and that name isn’t a name everyone else is going to “get”. It’s a personal thing between you and God Himself. WOW…
Isn’t that a beautiful thing to think on? I LOVED it.
So there I was, not paying attention in church, loving that the Lord loves me so much and knows me so well that He has a special name just for me that only He and I understand. Amazing. I hope that lifts your heart today as it lifted mine yesterday.