What Name Shall We Call You?
“Joseph, a Levite from Cyprus, whom the apostles called Barnabas (which means Son of Encouragement), sold a field he owned and brought the money and put it at the apostles’ feet.” (Acts 4:36-37, NIV)
Reputation (character) and legacy (what you leave behind) go hand in hand. As an Executive Coach, I counsel my clients to be very purposeful and intentional about WHO they are and WHAT they do. To help them understand this, I start by asking them about their reputation. I explain that we all have them. Reputation or character is the sum total of our actions. It is a direct expression of our core values, beliefs, habits and customs. We create and build our reputation every day by the things we say and do. A simple way to discover your reputation is to ask others who you are to them. For many people this is a new way of thinking about themselves. Next, I introduce the subject of legacy and explain that legacy is the end-product of your reputation after you are gone – your impact on others.
Reading this verse, I’m moved by the name Joseph was given by the disciples. They called him “Barnabas” (Son of Encouragement). He is mentioned 28 times in Acts as we read about the power of the Holy Spirit, the disciples and the early church. He is commended for his personal support of Paul and their mission trips to teach and preach the Gospel, planting and nurturing startup churches, giving financially into the early church, and providing emotional and spiritual support to everyone he met. Biblical scholars even mention Barnabas as a possible author of Hebrews - one of my favorite books in the New Testament. I am deeply humbled that several years ago, a spiritual mentor and brother in Christ labeled me a modern-day Barnabas. Since that time, others have confirmed my reputation as a man who encourages and teaches, who offers comfort and support. I’ve come to realize that is God’s call on my life.
Child of God, what is your reputation? Ask God to reveal His name for you and start living it out. I encourage you to commit today to leave a lasting legacy that honors and glorifies God.
Lord, thank you for the eternal legacy of your Son Jesus Christ. Jesus, teach me to live a life that honors and glorifies you. May your grace rest on me and your love guide me. Through the blood of Jesus and in the name of Jesus I pray, amen.