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Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Mount Joy town clock
Town clock in Mount Joy, PA

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"A Good Name"
"A good name is more desirable than great riches" (Proverbs 22:1).
We sure like the name of our town, Mount Joy, although we are not on a mountain!  Actually our town is named after a ship. The area we live in sure has some interesting names for towns as well. Here in Lancaster County there's Paradise, Intercourse, and Blue Ball. In our role as company chaplains we recently started serving a company located in Bird in Hand.  Many other town names reflect the spiritual heritage of the founders such as Bethlehem, Ephrata, and Nazareth.
But I suppose there are interesting town names wherever you live. In northern Pennsylvania there's Barkeyville.  When approaching this town we often picture a pack of dogs and Brooksyne or I will often do our imitation of dogs barking.  There is a community directly south of Belton, Missouri where I grew up named "Peculiar" (where I felt right at home since the Bible (KJV) describes God's people as "a peculiar people."
) In Oklahoma we sometimes drive through Nowata, which is probably an Indian name but we always wondered if the early settlers arrived during a terrible drought!
"A good name is more desirable than great riches."  Initially I assumed this meant a name one liked.  I've always liked my name since I am named after Stephen, a bold Bible character.  My middle name is Clark and I like that because I think of the explorers Lewis and Clark. But frankly there are certain names I am sure glad my parents didn't name me.  I won't mention these names, since it might actually be your name and I certainly don't want to offend! 
But a "good name" in the text means a name that connotes a person of honorable character and good reputation.  For instance when we refer to a business that is known for honesty and integrity, we often say "It has a good name."

Having a good name is truly more desirous than possessing great riches which only have short duration. Certainly there are also those with great riches who do not have a good name, based on the Lord's assessment of what is truly good.  A good name is developed over time, really a life time, and the true judgment of success will not be known until this life is over and we personally meet the Lord. The highest standard will be to hear our Lord say these words directly to us, "Well done, good and faithful servant."
Consider your name.  What do you suppose others think when they speak your name or hear it repeated?  Does it represent a person who has a good name based upon integrity, truthfulness and godly character?
Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Daily Prayer:  Jesus, Your name stands above all the rest, for it is only in Your name that we have power to combat the enemy as we boldly approach the throne of grace.  We desire to be people of godly character as we reflect glory and honor to You, Jesus, Name above all Names.  Amen.

Note from Brooksyne:  Speaking of names, mine has always distinguished me from all the rest.  Readers have written and asked about the pronunciation and the origin as well.  Brooksyne is pronounced Brook-seen'.  I would be unable to count the number of times I've explained it and had to pronounce it since I was young enough to speak for myself.  My father's name was Brooklyn and my folks were hoping for a baby boy, but surprise, I was a girl!  Mom had to come up with some derivative and thus the name "Brooksyne" originated 51 years ago.  In the past twenty-five years the name "Brooke" has become popularized and has made my name a bit less distinct.  I would have welcomed that as a child, but I've come to appreciate the distinctness of an original name.  My prayer is that my life will always reflect that of a person with "a good name" (not just because it's unusual, but because I have lived a life set apart for Christ.)

There's nothing like a hike alongside Donegal Springs Creek and at times trapsing right through it on a hot summer-like day. Yesterday my brother Mike returned to Califonia but had a great time with us out in the country the last two weeks.

Mike at Donegal Creek

Ester in Donegal Creek
Ester slipped while getting in the water and fell right on her behind.

Baby bird
As we walked in the creek we startled this baby bird
who was desperately calling for its Mom.

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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission; and the King James Version.
Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and I make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and to prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."

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