What’s in a Name?

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One of my favorite women in history is Chief Wilma Mankiller of the Cherokee Nation.  What a name!  You can talk about Betty and Wilma of Flintstones fame or the obvious connotations of Mankiller.  Not only was Chief Mankiller one of the first female chiefs of a major American Indian tribe, she also played a significant role in the Women’s Rights Movement, which invites other reflections.

I am glad to report, that unlike her name, Chief Mankiller was a true patriot, winner of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and a wonderful role model for young women of many generations.  I am proud to say that I had the privilege of meeting Chief Mankiller years ago at a Cherokee festival in New Echota, Georgia.  I was in awe of her name, persona and leadership.

There are numerous interesting names from history.  Charlemagne’s father was Pepin the Short (and he was), the United States actually had a political party called the Know Nothing Party, and one of my personal favorites, the Diet of Worms.

We, too, have an important name – Christian. How do we know what it means to be a follower of Christ?

“Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will save it. Luke 9:23-24

“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” John 13:34-35

What have a wonderful opportunity as we begin a new year and new semester to take up our cross daily, love one another, and live the name of Christian.

-Kimberly C. Macenczak, Ph.D.
Professor of History and Education

I ask today that we pray for our new students at Point University.   Please pray that in showing our love as Christians, the new students are made to feel an important part of the body of Christ.