Indian Life Newspaper -

What's Your Name?


Last updated 6/15/2020 at 6:14pm

I have a very bad habit of living in the past; remembering when my children were little, which was the happiest time of my life. I wish I could turn the clock back and live those happy days again. I need to stop looking back.

There is a saying: "Even God can not change the past.

I have thought about the Bible story about Lot's wife being turned into a pillar of salt in Genesis 19:15–26. God had sent angels to lead Lot and his family out of Sodom and Gomorrah because the cities were so wicked that God was going to destroy them with fire and brimstone.

Lot was warned to escape and to "not look behind thee." The Bible says Lot's wife looked back, and she became a pillar of salt. No one knows why she looked back. People think maybe she wanted to return to the cities and to a wild, sinful life; maybe she had family and friends she didn't want to leave behind; maybe she loved her home and didn't want to leave it. But for whatever reason, she disobeyed God and was turned to salt.

The cities were destroyed; there must have been fire and lightning and thunder and the smell of sulfur.

With all that going on behind you, it would have been awfully hard not to look back. I probably would have looked back to see the cities destroyed, and I'd have been turned into a pillar of salt. It's hard not to "look back."

Lot's wife was never called anything but "Lot's wife" in the Bible. Her name was never mentioned.

Jesus spoke of her in Luke 17:32 when he warned, "Remember Lot's wife." Jesus didn't call her by name. In fact, 86 women are mentioned in the Bible, and 43 of them are not named.

Noah's wife and Job's wife were mentioned, but not by name. They were simply "Noah's wife" and "Job's wife." The Samaritan woman, the woman caught in adultery, the woman who anointed the feet of Jesus and the generous widow are not named. Jesus referred to them as "Daughter." We know what these women did, but they are anonymous.

If I used all my names, I would be Crying Wind Hummingbird April Knight, (Niyol Daachagii Mahnsaw Daynah Warrior of the Fourth Moon).

When a woman discovers she is going to have a baby, she immediately starts thinking about a name for the baby. We want pretty names for girls, strong names for boys. Sometimes we outgrow our names, and the name that was perfect for us as a child is not perfect for us when we are adults.

The two most popular names over the past 100 years were Jim and Mary. I know five men named Jim and four women named Mary. I knew a woman whose last name was "Young." She named her baby daughter "Forever," so her daughter's name was "Forever Young."

One of my favorite people was called "Shorty." It was probably not the name he was given at birth but no one ever knew his given name. He never got a driver's license, although he drove everywhere in an old, rusty pickup truck. He had dozens of jobs, he rode wild horses in the rodeo, he was a carpenter, he worked on ranches, he cooked in dozens of truck stops. It seemed like Shorty could do anything. Everyone liked Shorty; he would help anyone he could. He was always happy and he could make everyone laugh. When he died, his tombstone just said "Shorty." That was the only name he ever needed.

When we meet someone new, the first thing we do is exchange names. This is who I am, who are you? Most people carry their name from the cradle to the grave. Some people use nicknames and some people change their names, but it doesn't change who we are.

Animals know their names. If you have a dog, he might sleep all day and not move at all but if you speak his name, he'll be awake, on his feet, tail wagging and look you straight in the eye. He knows when you speak his name he'll be fed or taken for a walk, and he's excited because he knows when his master speaks, something good will happen.

We name our pets, we name our farms, our houses, our cars and most of the things that are important to us. Naming something makes it personal. It makes a connection. It makes it ours.

God knows your name. He says, "Fear not, for I have redeemed you. I have called you by name, you are mine" (Isaiah 43:2).

Crying Wind is the author of Crying Wind and My Searching Heart, When the Stars Danced, and Thunder in Our Hearts, Lightning in Our Veins.


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