Recently, my family and I vacationed in Pawley's Island, SC. It has been a favorite destination for us for years. This year I discovered a little slice of heaven right there on the beach. I find it wonderfully refreshing to read God’s Word while surrounded by His creations. The ocean is endless, the sounds lift my spirits. As I was reading, I discovered Revelation 2:17 while sitting in the sand. Here is what the Lord tells us, “Anyone with ears to hear must listen to the Spirit and understand what He is saying to the churches(us). To everyone who is victorious, I will give some of the manna that has been hidden away in Heaven. And I will give to each one a white stone, and on the stone will be engraved a new name that no one else understands except the one who receives it.”
Stop the presses! A white stone! A white stone with a new name written on it? My mind goes directly to images of Jesus placing a white stone in my hand and me speechless in His presence.
As I sat in my beach chair, I dissected what this all means.
First, if you are in Christ, you are victorious. That is good news for all of us that have placed our faith in Jesus Christ.
Next, if you have placed your faith in Jesus Christ, you have been given the gift of the Holy Spirit. The Spirit lives in us and gives us the ears to hear the whispers of our Lord.
Then, with Jesus, we are promised eternal life. The manna that John(the writer of Revelations) speaks of is Jesus Christ. Just as manna sustained the Israelites in Egypt, Jesus Christ is the sustenance we need and He is the manna that is hidden away in Heaven.
Finally, and this is my new favorite part, we all receive a white stone with a new name on it. And only God and I will recognize the name.
That is so cool!
But why do we have to have a new name? I like my name.
2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “ anyone that belongs to Jesus Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun.” I know this verse well because I have lived it. Once I accepted Jesus Christ ( I mean truly accepted all of Him) into my life, my old life was gone. My heart changed, my perspective changed, and my love for others changed. It was nothing short of a modern-day Jesus miracle. And just like God promises, my new life had begun.
Just like Paul’s name was changed from Saul after he encountered Jesus on the road to Damascus, I too, had an encounter with Jesus, therefore my name is changed as well. This new name will represent my true character, my true heart. The heart that God knows.
Have you had an encounter with Jesus Christ?
If your answer is No, seek Him, the answer is there. If your answer is I don’t know, seek Him, the answer is there. If the answer is yes, then ask yourself these questions.
What will my new name be?
I have pondered this a lot lately.
My parents named me Paige. It means young helper or a mate of young nobles.
But What will God name me?
God knows our true character, He knows our hearts better than we do. And just like God does so well, He has prompted me to pay more attention to my heart. He has reminded me to allow Jesus to renew my heart daily. I need Jesus daily to remind me that I belong to Him and to reflect His character, not my own.
After all, I don’t want to spend eternity with a name like Envy, Bitter, or Bossy, do you?
I wonder...What name will be on my white stone?
So, for the rest of my beach week, as my husband and I walked along the shore, we collected lots of pretty white stones in the sand.
We put them in a glass jar to remind us of God’s Words to us that week. And more importantly. The lesson that God taught us. Now each time I look at the jar of white stones, I am reminded to be kind, be encouraging, be faithful, and to love Jesus with my whole heart.
What name will I be given by the Most Holy God in Heaven?
Whatever the name will be, I want others to recognize that new name in me here on earth. The same name that my Father in Heaven will call me...one day when I am Home.