What’s better than fine perfume?

chanel bottleA good name is better than fine perfume. Ecclesiastes 7:1

Today, I am wearing my favorite fine perfume—Chanel Mademoiselle. When I wear it, I usually get comments like, “You smell so good.” But the scripture above tells us that a good name is far better than a nice smelling perfume. My name, Rachel Britton, is a good name for a British person living in America!

However, there is one name that surpasses all names. It is the most fragrant of names—Jesus. His name, and the other names given to him—Christ, Immanuel (which means God with us), Prince of Peace, and Savior—speak of who he is, and the work he has done for us. When we know Jesus then his name embodies the good he has done on our behalf to give us hope and a future. Jesus is a good name.

What about your own name? What does it reflect about your work and who you are? We may work hard to have a good name, but sometimes things we say and do don’t match up and then our reputation is in disrepute.

As you may know, I have written a book called Prayer Zone Workout for the Heart that encourages people in physical exercise and prayer because these disciplines are good for our overall health. In particular, I understand prayer to be intimate conversation with God that will change us for the better from the inside out. When people see my name, I want it to reflect my work as a good writer, but also I want my name to represent me as having good qualities, such as love and compassion, and as someone who is being changed for the better.

I practice my own Prayer Zone Workouts regularly at the track in the center of our town. Last week, I arrived, as usual, early in the morning. I stepped onto the track and turned to the right, joining a number of other people who were already walking or running in an anticlockwise direction—this is the unwritten rule and practice. I had only gone a few steps when I noticed a lady walking towards me. She was going the wrong way! But worse than this—she was in my lane! I was annoyed. Why didn’t she realize that everyone else was moving in the opposite direction to her? I resolved, stubbornly, not to move and allow her to pass. This was my lane and I was sticking to it! She smiled as we came closer. I glared back.

When I got home, I relayed this story to my husband. He put into words what had been nagging me since the incident, but I had pushed to the back of my mind: “What if she has read your book?”

Proverbs 3 says to win favor and a good name in the sight of God and man, you must let love and faithfulness never leave you… write them on the tablet of your heart. 

I was back at the track the next day. The same woman was there, walking in the wrong direction and in my lane. This time, however, I made the effort to smile and say good morning.

A prayer: Heavenly Father, forgive me for behavior that does not represent a good name. As I live and work, help me, through your Holy Spirit, to build a life that represents your goodness, and the good and precious name of your son Jesus Christ. Amen

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