As I pondered what to write in this week’s blog, my mind couldn’t help but think of all the pain and suffering we go through in our lives. The honest truth is that we all face hardship. We all face challenges and trials that try to knock us down. In the midst of life’s many challenges, we can choose either to remain defeated or to keep going, keep fighting, and keep trusting in the Lord.
Too often, however, we become discouraged, and at times this discouragement leads to frustration, a loss of hope, a level of anxiety, and fear of the unknown to the point that we stop trusting.
In my young 21 years on Earth, I will admit that I have battled anxiety, depression, and chronic illness. In some cases, my trust in God has abated as I have asked, “Why me Lord? Why?” In the middle of these various circumstances, I have turned to my mp3 player, turned on the radio, inserted a gospel album into my DVD player, and listened to any song to give me comfort.
Of course, I don’t always need a negative circumstance in order to listen. Last week, I was searching through YouTube listening to Kristian Stanfill, Hillsong, and the Gaither Vocal Band, among others, when I came across one of the many songs I would listen to when I was in middle school battling intense depression. I thought about the various times in life when trials have tried to knock me down, and each time a small voice would say to me, “Trust me. Just trust me. I haven’t left you yet and I never will.” It made me think of how beautiful and how majestic the name of Jesus truly is. In every single battle that we fight in life, no matter how big or small, we can call on His name, and He will guide us and bring us to Him.
I sat in my recliner listening to Vestal Goodman singing, “What a Lovely Name,” and afterwards, I looked up the lyrics to focus on the words (see video below).
There’s a name above all others,
Wonderful to hear, bringing hope and cheer
It’s the lovely name of Jesus,
Evermore the same, what a lovely name
What a lovely name, the name of Jesus
Reaching higher far, than the brightest star
Sweeter than the songs they sing in heaven
Let the world proclaim, what a lovely name
He’ll return in clouds of glory,
Saints of ev’ry race, shall behold His face
With Him enter heaven’s city,
Ever to proclaim, what a lovely name
I have come to realize that in any circumstance, we can call on the name of Jesus, and that is what He yearns from us, to turn to Him, to fix our eyes upon Him, and trust in Him even when the situation tells us to do otherwise. Sure, we can choose to turn to other things in life in an attempt to bring us comfort, but it is only the name of Jesus in which we can find true solace, true comfort, and true joy. So proclaim His name. Shout it from the mountaintops and sing it in the valleys. When life tries to knock you off balance, turn to Him and call on His name. The Lord goes before you and cares about everything you go through. So call on His name and place your cares at His feet.
As 1 Peter 5:6-7 tells us, “Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, so that He may exalt you at the proper time, casting all your care on Him, because He cares about you” (HCSB).
And even in the best of times, continue to glorify and praise His name.
Psalm 105:1-4 (NIV) says to us:
1 Give praise to the Lord, proclaim his name;
make known among the nations what he has done.
2 Sing to him, sing praise to him;
tell of all his wonderful acts.
3 Glory in his holy name;
let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice.
4 Look to the Lord and his strength;
seek his face always.
In every situation, both good and bad, praise His name, glorify His name, and sing His name. Let everyone know that Jesus is the greatest name.
As I thought about how awesome His name truly is, and how much meaning it has, I remembered one of my favorite performances of all time. For a while, earlier this year, the song Dad and I listened to every day was Revelation Song sung by Kari Jobe (see video below).
Filled with wonder,
At the mention of Your Name
Jesus, Your Name is Power
Breath, and Living Water
Such a marvelous mystery
In the middle of the video, after singing, “At the mention of Your Name,” she repeats “Your Name. Your Name. Your Name. Your Name!” while jumping and dancing, and praising Jesus. I thought about all the names I could think of that we call our Savior: Abba, Father, Lamb of God, Healer, Redeemer, I AM, Yahweh, the Holy One, His Majesty, Emmanuel, The Way, Lord, Son of God, King of Kings, Light of the World, JESUS CHRIST!
How can I not get excited? How can I not jump up and down and proclaim His name? How can I not sing out His name with every breath in me? In every circumstance, in every good time, in every bad time, praise His name. His name is worthy of all our praise!
Philippians 2:9-11 (NKJV) tells us:
9 Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, 10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, 11 and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
How awesome will it be when that day comes and we are all gathered before the throne and every tongue will shout His name and confess that He is Lord. What a day that will be!
No matter where life takes you, never stop praising the name of Jesus.
WHAT A LOVELY NAME!!!
Goodman, Vestal. What a Lovely Name. By Charles B. Wycuff, 1967. Lyrics.com. Web. 20 July. 2015.
Holman Christian Standard Bible. Bible Gateway. Web. 20 July. 2015.
Jobe, Kari. Revelation Song. By Jennie Lee Riddle, 2004. K-Love. Web. 20 July. 2015.
New International Version. Bible Gateway. Web. 20 July. 2015.
New King James Version. Bible Gateway. Web. 20 July. 2015.
What a Lovely Name by Vestal Goodman
Revelation Song by Kari Jobe