Terrible Nicknames

I never liked the name and I never really understood why she called me that.

Judges 6:1-40

Reference: v.12 When the angel of the Lord appeared to Gideon, he said, “The Lord is with you, mighty warrior.”  (TNIV Bible)

Explore: As a kid I always wanted to have a cool nickname.  But the only one I was given was ‘Big Bully’.  I hated this name and thankfully the only person to call me this was an older family friend whom we called Aunty Ida.  Every time we visited we would all come in with hugs and hellos and she would call us all by name until it came to me.  “And how’s my Big Bully?” she would ask.  I never liked the name and I never really understood why she called me that.  I was the youngest of my siblings, which made me smaller in every way to my two older sisters, and I was by no means the bossiest amongst us.  I hated this name so much that I never really wanted to visit Aunty Ida, as I felt bad being called something so negative.  When Aunty Ida passed away, I was in my early twenties, and I finally got the courage to ask my mother why she had called me ‘Big Bully’ as a child.  My mum didn’t even know.  The only thought she had was that maybe Aunty Ida was being ironic because I was so small.  No surprise her sarcasm wasn’t picked up by a three year old!

Application: The words we speak over people can be very powerful.  A few thousand years ago there was a guy called Gideon who felt very low.  He, his family and his whole nation were under threat.  So he hid away in fear of his life.  When God met him in his hiding place he was not sarcastic or demeaning to Gideon.  In fact, He wasn’t even straight down the line by calling him a ‘scaredy cat’.  No, when God came to Gideon, He addressed him as a ‘Mighty Warrior’.  God wasn’t being ironic.  God refused to name Gideon by his fear, but called him to his potential.  Gideon certainly wasn’t acting like a warrior at the time, but it wasn’t long after God spoke these words over him that he rose to the challenge and truly became a Mighty Warrior.  We can have the same impact on others.  The names that we call them can impact how they respond.  Instead of calling people by their limitations we need to see people as God does and call them to their potential.

Prayer: Lord, thank you for seeing us as someone greater than we currently are.  Amen.

In what area of your life do you need to be reminded that you are a Mighty Warrior?

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This article was written by Linda Bailey

Linda started theological studies in 1999 in Australia. After working for ten years in various church ministries, she now works as the breakfast producer at 89.9 LightFM - the Christian radio station in Melbourne, Australia. She writes blogs every day about passages she is currently reading in the Bible. Follow her on Google Plus +Linda Bailey or Facebook by clicking the like button on the right of this page.