A Brawl of Biblical Proportion
Lord, do not forsake me;
do not be far from me, my God.
Come quickly to help me,
my Lord and my Savior. (Psalm 38:21-22)
Parents put a lot of time into deciding what to name their children. They always have. But it appears some don’t think about it enough. In recent years there have been quite a number of stories about people saddling their offspring with weird names.
Nicolas Cage named his son Kal-El, Superman’s birth name. Jason Lee of Alvin and the Chipmunks fame named his son Pilot Inspektor. Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin named their daughter Apple. And who can forget Michael Jackson’s child, Blanket? Then there are some lesser known odd names. Entertainer Penn Jillette and his wife named their child Moxie Crimefighter. But my favorite has to be actor Rob Morrow’s child Tu. Get it? Tu Morrow? (I bet the kid just loathes the musical Annie.)
And it’s not just parents doing it. Sometimes adults who should know better bring it on themselves. For instance, according to a story in The Atlantic…
… 44-year-old Mr. Gary Matthews petitioned the court to have his name legally changed to "Boomer the Dog." In his petition, Mr. Matthews stated, "I've been known as Boomer the Dog by friends in the community for more than 20 years. I want to bring my legal name in line with that."
Judge Ronald Folilno denied Mr. Matthew's name-change request, arguing that it would cause too much confusion.
This Sunday we’re going to see a story in Genesis about a name change. This time it’s not instigated by the person’s parents, or even by himself. God is the one who offers up this nickname. And it’s pretty important, because it provides a description, not just of the man, but also of God’s people. It comes at the end of an all-night wrestling match.
But most importantly, I think it can tell us something about relating to God.