Church of England Diocese of Leicester Burbage with Aston Flamville

Thought for the day - 23rd April

24 Apr 2020, 9:15 a.m.

Thought for the Day Wednesday 22nd April

There’s Power in the Name!

Whilst pottering in the garden a few rambling thoughts came to mind, as they do from time to time, Im trying to put them into some sort of sense, so bear with!

Everything in the World and even Universe has a name, from the smallest virus to the largest Nebula. In the garden of Eden, God gave Adam the job of naming everything “So out of the ground the Lord God formed every animal of the field and every bird of the air, and brought them to the man to see what he would call them; and whatever the man called each living creature, that was its name The man gave names to all cattle, and to the birds of the air, and to every animal of the field.”

In John 14:13 Jesus says, ‘You can ask for anything in my name, and I will do it, so that the Son can bring glory to the Father.’ Powerful stuff, I often ask God to intervene on my behalf and usually something happens, but not like I thought it would!

Our baptisms at St Catherine’s and St Peter’s are joyous celebrations and we have been blessed over the years to have a steady supply, it has become a ‘rite of passage' for many, many folk. Some people however choose not to have a religious celebration, but still have Naming Ceremonies, every culture has a way of marking the naming of a child. Father Andrew at every baptism says what a privilege it is to name a child and as is part of our tradition we often hear about the origin of the name of those being baptised.

This got me thinking; How do you feel when you cannot remember someone’s name?

A little embarrassed, I bet. “Hey you” is not a way of addressing someone. We all need to be able to name something, to give it credence, to give it legitimacy.

However, we describe the current situation, Epidemic, Pandemic, Coronavirus or Covid-19 all give legitimacy. In the last 4 weeks I have never mentioned any of the above, in fact typing these words gives me some trouble. Call me silly, stupid, lost, deranged whatever you like, names are powerful things and sometimes, sometimes they can cause fear to arise within you, take the ‘C’ word for instance.

So, I refuse to call this “thing” anything, I even baulk slightly whenever I hear it named. To me it is so much easier to deal with as a nameless entity. I know it exists, it is causing untold misery to people, I accept it is changing all our lives forever, but I don’t want that name to have any power over me and mine, give it a try, it’s easier than you think.

Being in the choir since Adam was a lad, I have sung many Hymns and anthems, one that springs to mind is; "At the Name of Jesus" a hymn from 1870 with lyrics penned by Caroline Maria Noel. This hymn proclaims the sovereignty of Jesus as the first line says, "At the name of Jesus every knee shall bow.” The Story behind this hymn is that Caroline Maria Noel experienced bouts of intense suffering, and many of these lyrics were the outcome of her times of distress. They are particularly acclimated "for the Sick and Lonely" and were composed first for private meditation than for public use, although many are befitted to the latter audience. It is a rousing hymn and is often the Processional for Ascension Day. Verse 5 is particularly relevant at this time and brings me comfort that there is ‘Power in Jesus name,’ to assuage anything that may seek to have power over me.

5.In your hearts enthrone him; there let him subdue

all that is not holy, all that is not true.

Look to him, your Saviour, in temptations' hour;

let his will enfold you in its light and power.

A Prayer:

Heavenly Father,

by the power of your Holy Spirit

you give your faithful people new life in the water of baptism.

Guide and strengthen us by the same Spirit,

that we who are born again may serve you in faith and love,

and grow into the full stature of your Son, Jesus Christ,

who is alive and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit

now and for ever. Amen