What’s in a name?

Consider words like power, vision, confidence, courage, fearlessness, focus, purpose, destiny. We feel strengthened with words like these.

Conversely, words can promote negativity as well and often these labels can impact behavior for a lifetime.

Part of the Crowell DNA is joy in giving nicknames. Over many years at NBC, kids have begged me to give them a nickname.
Jennifer is my “Glory” because she was our residential butterfly filling the home with song and laughter.

Jay was nicknamed the “Oarsman” because I hoped he would embrace having the work ethic of the men who rowed for the world class Washington Huskies. It was a name of immense honor. Oarsmen get the job done well.

In junior high Jay returned the honors and nicknamed me “Frederico Suave,” and soon all the hoopers on our Thunder team called me Suave. It stuck.

Today little dribblers in Alaska villages giggle calling me Papa Suave.

So what’s your name?

Today’s text is Matthew 14

Backdrop: When Jesus noticed a tax collector named Levi who was hated by the people, his new name became Matthew.

The takeaway today is what Jesus taught about humility.

Jesus noticed the people were crowding to get the front seats at the table near the place of honor. He taught them to take the worst seat, not the best seat. If you crowd to be first and are asked to move you will be embarrassed. However, if you are asked to leave the poor seat to join the place of honor you will be blessed.

Humility – just typing the keys to form the word gives me pause to reflect on how often I have lacked humility. How easy it is to expect to be treated in a special way.

Today I choose humility. Today I will choose to be the smaller ornament on the Christmas tree. Today my attention will be to do more giving than taking.

Once again I am reminded of St. Ignatius exhorting his people to “Take, Lord, and receive all my liberty, my knowledge, my understanding, my memory and my entire will. All I have and call my own I return to you. Give me only your love and your grace. That is enough for me.”

Win the moment. Today is a gift.

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