Do Angels use Nicknames

English: A cup of coffee.As I write this at a local coffee shop the coffee-cup placemats ask a question: “If there was a book about your life, what would the title be?”

I guess the answer would be different depending on who was writing it, but I was reminded of a discussion at work the other day.  Someone said, “I have discovered the nickname my staff have given me.”

“Oh, yes?  Of course we’ve all got a nickname (or two),” someone responded.

“All of us?” I asked hopefully.

“All of us,” everyone chorused.

It got me thinking.  My guess is that most of us would love to know what others call us, but we’re pretty glad we don’t.  And if we discovered one of the less-flattering ones we’d probably shrug it off: They don’t understand me, after all; they are biased, and anyway, who are they to point fingers?  (I could call them a few names, if it comes to that.)  It’s certainly tempting to ignore what others think of us. 

But what about how God sees us?  Do the angels have nicknames for us? What would yours be? Do we want to know? The Bible speaks about a Book of Life.  What would the one about my life be called? 

I have a good idea what my book would be called outside of God’s grace.  “Guilty” would be prominent in the title.  So much pain and suffering caused to others—the consequences of my actions still felt.  God’s grace doesn’t tear out those pages.  To throw them away would be to forget how much I need forgiveness; it would be to ignore the wonder, the extravagance, the power of God’s grace. What God does is to write across them: “Forgiven” and “Loved by God”. 

To remember the past everyday, even to remember how much we have been forgiven, is a painful thing.  The danger is that we might become mired in self-pity or self-loathing, neither of which is God’s way to deal with the past, and neither will bring the healing God desires.  But in remembering lies the opportunity every day to wonder afresh at the unimaginable, underserved love of God; his gracious healing of enormous wounds through the suffering of Jesus.

I think my book would be called, “Lest we forget.”  What do you think?


Filed under Coffee Shop Tales, Odds & Ends

11 responses to “Do Angels use Nicknames

  1. samuel inbaraja

    My heavenly book would be titled ,”Abundant Grace, Abundant Love , Abundant life”.


  2. Norma

    I have been trying to make up my mind about a reply since I read your message on Sunday. How does one comment on such a deep and personal piece of writing? It almost seems an intrusion. It was thought provoking and made me do some soul searching.Praise the Lord, we serve a forgiving, risen Saviour. I echo Jen’s sentiments, keep writing.


  3. Judy

    Hear hear Ian!! Thanks really thought provoking stuff!! Lest we forget is very apt for all of us! We need to remember but then accept the forgiveness and move forward, and forgive ourselves too!! xxx


  4. Jen

    Well written my Darling, I really enjoyed that. It is such a privilege to be the one who reads your posts first – keep writing. Love Jen xx


  5. Food for thought, WP! Of course the Ineffable One has been known to reveal nicknames occasionally. Jacob (deceiver) was revealed as Israel (struggle, prevail) and Simon (he has heard) as Peter (rock). Are these nicknames invested or superimposed on us following a time of testing? Or are they what emerges of our true God given essence when life peels the outer layers back? I wonder…


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