What is My Name?

This week our precious grandson is here to help us celebrate Christmas. He can now say a few syllables and the deadline is approaching for my official Grandmother name to be declared. This discussion has been ongoing for over a year. My mantra is that I just want him to call me-anytime, anywhere. My daughters have periodically given me endearing nicknames which have been brought to the table as possible options. One has been Linny. I’m okay with this name. I just don’t want to be called “Looney Linny” in future years if I ever run down the street in a slip and my hair is standing on end. I’m just thinking ahead.

My name has always been confusing. I am used to that fact and it has never really bothered me. Names are important. I have friends who correct you immediately if you don’t pronounce or spell their names correctly.

My given name was Mary Melinda. By the time I reached college I had no problem raising my hand in a class when the professor wanted to know if Mary McGill was present. Mary continues to follow me today in doctor’s offices, banks and anytime someone reads my name off a credit card. Lindy, was assigned as my nickname on the day I was born after my great grandmother, Melinda. When I got married I dropped Melinda but that brought on more confusion. I am often called Linda, Mindy, Wendy, and Lindsay. When I hear them, I take notice. At least they don’t call me Frank. I had an older neighbor, 30 years ago, that always called me Mindy. After a year of living side by side, I let it go and answered him when I walked outside to get the newspaper.

A name is important. What it communicates to others is important. When someone recognizes me and calls me by name, I feel noticed and affirmed. Many times we can say a person’s name, but we don’t communicate that they matter on other levels. When an individual feels invisible or even erased from lives that they love, there is pain. We may see them and say their name, but because of our own issues we cannot take the next steps to really engage and let them know that we care.

The most powerful message ever given is a name. The prophet Isaiah writes,

“Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”
Isaiah 7:11-14

Immanuel. “God with us.” God in us. If God is with me and in me, I can look at myself and others differently. In low moments I can call myself names that God would not even think of calling me. When I am disappointed in others, the God “Immanuel,” allows me to look at them in a new way. I can call them by names that honor him. The transforming power that was given to us at Christmas allows me to call myself and others by new names, because these are the names that God gives us.

I’m pretty sure that Baby Will is not going to solve the grandmother name this Christmas. He blesses us in many ways. He has also reminded me of the baby that was born, whose name gives me redemption and changes my life, Immanuel. May we all experience in a new way what it means that God is with us and in us, today.

Merry Christmas!

“And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6


8 thoughts on “What is My Name?

  1. Love this. Names ARE important…sometime maybe we can talk about what God taught me, showed me, on that score many, many years ago.

    I love you – wish your whole tribe a wonderful Christmas – hope we can have time together soon. I’m here till at least the end of January. That means we get more than one time! đŸ˜€

    Merry Christmas! Faith

    PS loved, loved the photo on your blog of Will and Santa!

    Sent from my iPad


  2. You will always be Lyndon to me! I am sure someone suggested Me-me (how would you spell it?), like your sweet grandmother? Anyway, have a wonderful Christmas! Love you.

  3. Love you, Lindy. Knowing God knows my name means everything. Oh, and you will always be Lyndon B. To me! Would that be to much for him to say?? Merry Christmas to you all!

  4. I LOVED this post – and the very special picture. It brings back so many memories of our first grandchild and how I got my “name.” Whatever name Baby Will ends up giving you, you will cherish it. You will remember exactly when he said the word and how it sounded to you. All of your future grandchildren will call you the name that he chooses for you, and you will be thrilled every time you hear it.

    My father gave me the first name of Repsie, after his sister. I am so thankful that my mother had enough common sense to give me the middle name of Nadeen. The first day of school, I always cringed when the teacher called out the name “Repsie Dudley.” I would quickly ask them to please call me by my middle name. I always hated the name until a very special brother-in-law started calling me Repsie or “Reps.” For many years after he died, I had a personalized license plate with REPSIE on it.

    It isn’t the name we have that is important; it’s the love that is offered to us when someone calls our name. I am so grateful that God knows my name and that I know His name. I just need to honor Him by talking to Him more often.

    Thank you, Mary Melinda, aka Lindy, for sharing these messages. They are so very meaningful to me. Your love touches us all.

    Merry Christmas to you and your family – and especially to that precious Baby Will.

  5. it was lovely to talk to you face to face on Sunday and not just across the Pond ! I have only ever known you as Lindy or possibly “Bill’s wife” !!! For years to many in the business world I have been known as Peter Dale’s wife and as I am not into all this equality lark! I have regarded it as rather special. !! I guess the most important name is to know that we are a child of God and that Jesus knows us as individually His . Looking forward to seeing you again whilst we are here – Margaret – latest grandchild’s name for me “Granny Boo Boo” !!

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