David Luschwitz - PSI
In 1967 Muhammad Ali tapped gloves with opponent Ernie Terrell in what is now known as the "What´s my name?" fight, so called for the manner in which Ali fought against his opponent, punishing him for deliberately calling him by his former name in the lead up to the bout.
Ali was born Cassius Marcellus Clay Jnr. The name Clay harkens back to a time when African Americans were bought and sold as slaves. As part of his conversion to Islam, Clay changed his name to Muhammad Ali—signifying a new identity and separation from the enslavement of his ancestors.
Ali yelled, "What's my name?" with each sickening blow as he blackened both Terrell's eyes. Ali punished him for calling him Clay and made sure, as he had promised, that Terrell never forgot his name.
God knows the importance of a name.
In Bible, in Genesis 32, we read about Jacob. Jacob wrestles with God and demands God's blessing. They wrestle all night and while Jacob does not win, he does not lose either.
Jacob means "deceiver, con-artist".
His name had framed the way he lived his life. Up to that point there was not a great deal for Jacob to be proud of, but on this day that would change his future, wrestling God he yells, "Bless me!". And God follows through in the most unlikely way.
He changes his name.
"You will be called Israel" God says.
Israel means "he who wrestles with God" or "triumphant with God".
Israel's whole identity was changed as a result of a name change. The way he lived the rest of his life was different and the generations after him were blessed.
What do they call you?
Perhaps you need a name change. Liar. Trouble-maker. Trash. Scum. Thug. Adulterer. None of those are titles you have to persist with. You can change your name today.
Do as Israel did. Wrestle with God. Ask Jesus to change you, forgive you and bless you and He will. He'll transform you so powerfully inwardly that it will present outwardly.
Generations after you will not remember your previous names, but the names you are given by God. Forgiven. Holy. Accepted in the Beloved. Redeemed (meaning bought back for a price).
It's never too late to change!•