Allow me to introduce myself… my name is Pastor Jim Merillat. Many of you probably already knew that. However, I do have variations of my name that may surprise you.
For example, when I sign formal documents I sign “James J. Merillat.”
When I was younger and my mother was upset with me… which rarely happened… she would call out my “in trouble” name… “James Jay.”
I have been called “Jimmy” and only two people were allowed to call me by this name. My dear grandmother Hattie Merillat and my offensive line high school football coach Mike Walker. They have both passed away, so I should not be hearing this name again.
When I was in grade school and then in college, I had the nickname “Big Jim”. I was always the bigger taller kid growing up, so it fits. When I was in college and part of a campus ministry there were several “Jims” and I happened to be the biggest… so once again… it fit!
Some fun-loving playful friends would call me “Jimbo”. And that was okay… just not my preference. Because they were my friends, I let it slide.
At one time I wanted to be an Industrial Arts Education teacher. In my training, I needed to do student teaching in a middle school … in order to see if I was cut out to be a teacher. There I was known as “Mr. Merillat.”
I have had people who rubbed me the wrong way… mainly because they referred to me as “Jim Bob”. You remember… that name made famous by The Walton’s TV show.
My wife Pam refers to me as “hun” and my son Caleb calls me “dad”.
I have been known as “Reverend Jim”, “Brother Jim” and even some “new” names I have recently received courtesy of my fellow California freeway drivers!
Why do I tell you this?
My “names” often capture a time in my life or a character quality that reflects… me.
I began a new preaching series that focuses on the names of God in scripture. Every single name for God is significant and very important to know. His name reflects His wonderful personality and character. It shows us who HE is… and what HE does! Hopefully, as we learn more about God, our faith in Him will deepen (strengthen).
Scripture says in Psalm 69:30 (NLT) – “Then I will praise God’s name with singing, and I will honor him with thanksgiving.”
So, I hope you will join us on this journey as we study the NAMES OF GOD!