And the LORD answered me: “Write the vision; make it plain on tablets, so he may run who reads it.” -Habakkuk 2:2
One lesson I specifically remember my father teaching my sisters and I is that in life at the end of the day, all you have is your name and your word. While living, if you have a bad name, it is hard for people to trust you or speak highly of you. If you don’t keep your word, you show that you can’t be reliable. Your name and your word are both very important. On December 18, 2016 Pastor Williams of Bates Memorial Baptist Church preached a sermon titled “Chosen by God”. In this sermon, he discussed how God told Mary and Joseph expressly that once the child is born, he will be named Jesus which in means “God with Us”. Pastor Williams went on to say that it is important what you name a child. The name of a child could determine his/her destiny. During this period of time, I was dealing with a lot of issues at work regarding disrespectful and insubordinate support staff, setup and company organization/communication. After the sermon, I decided to look up the meaning of my own name.
Jennifer: Light, White Wave, Fair One. My mother named me Jennifer because when she was pregnant with me, she stated that there was a visible light coming off of her. It was so bright (beyond normal pregnancy glow) that people commented on it often.Through prayer, she and my father decided to name me Jennifer because it meant Light or fair one. White Wave means that you enjoy organizing others + have a quick and discerning mind.
Ann: Priceless, Merciful.
Coulter: Found in the bible (1 Samuel 13:20-21) is an instrument on a plow that is a vertical knife like tool that cuts a furrow or trench about 7” deep. Researchers have found that if you use a Coulter on a plow or if you don’t, it still takes the same amount of time to get the job done. However, using a Coulter resulted in a much cleaner result. The Coulter softens the soil allowing the plow to undercut the furrow (a long narrow trench used for planting seeds and irrigation).
In my life, I have witnessed my father living out his ‘Coulter’ name in ministry; being a pastor over small churches with not enough people, willing workers, money or cooperation. Now I am living it out in my own way. Sometimes I get frustrated because it seems like I am always having to deal with the rough edges, being the one to break things in and then the person(s) after me are able to do their job, dealing with the difficulties of their own but without dealing with setting things up or the rough, raw edges.Through Pastor Williams’ message, I understand that I was chosen by God for this specific task and I am in training moment by moment to live up to the name that my parents through God, chose for me.
“It matters what you name a child.” -Rev. Dr. F. Bruce Williams
In finding out all of this information, I decided to make a mission statement for myself based off of my name. Each day striving to live up to these benchmarks:
As Jennifer: Bringing light to situations, exposing darkness and being a contagious light for and to others. (John 1:5)
As Ann: Knowing my worth and value in all areas of my life, and not settling for anything less than that. And being merciful to others and myself. Realizing that no one is perfect, including me. That’s why we all need more grace. (Priceless: Isaiah 43:4; Mercy: Luke 6:36)
As Coulter: Doing my part in God’s plan joyfully and willingly. Being the forerunner, softening the soil so that others (sowers and irrigation) can do their part too in a collective effort. (1 Samuel 13:20; Romans 5:3-4)
I encourage your to write your own mission statement for your life and abide by it. Live up to your name and keep your word.
Jennifer is a student and teacher of the bible who lives in Louisville, KY. She believes that strongly believes in maturing the saved.