I am excited to announce that my blog, which I’ve been rambling in since 2005, has a new URL! I feel like this little blog has finally grown up! JustRambling.blog is the official link and that got me to thinking…….how important is a URL or even a name?
I go by many names, actually. Gina is one of them, of course. G, Sis, Mom, Maddy, Babe…..Spouse, Wife, Daughter, American, and a few more. My mom used to call me Sam when I was little. All of these evoke positive feelings and memories for me, and reinforce my position on this earth and my right to fill this space. They affirm my existence and make me want to walk in the strength of who I am and to encourage those around me as I do so.
I’ve been called a few colorful names in my lifetime as well. Jerk, Homo, Libtard, Abomination, Satan, Idiot, and others I won’t post here as I am trying to keep it PG-13 rated. These names are not as fun, and usually don’t give me warm and fuzzy feelings as I recall the people or circumstances that voiced them. These names make me sad, or mad, or ashamed. I wonder sometimes if I focus on these names more deeply and more often than the positive ones, which makes me feel pretty gross.
Then, I think about the “Gina” I presented for so many years, the woman I thought my family, my church, and society wanted me to be. That was a hard gig and, while I suppose many people were “happy”, I was lying to everyone including myself and carrying the burden of my lie and my very life like an anvil around my neck.
I am writing on the fly and just asked myself – so where are you going with this Gina? This is getting pretty depressing. Then I replied to myself, “this blog is called Just Rambling – go with it!”. Which really is a strong indication that the 18 hours of PMP studying I’ve done today has taken its toll on my brain…….but I digress.
My point is this – we name ourselves or others name us things that can be positive or negative, but it doesn’t necessarily define us. For example, my acknowledgement to myself and my family that I am a homosexual was a hugely honest and freeing moment for me (aka a positive), while someone screaming it at me as a slur is definitely a negative. But the negative SITUATION doesn’t define me or turn the freeing truth into something bad. And further, PERCEPTION of something doesn’t define our worth or call to fulfilling something bigger than ourselves. We, as humans, seem to put a lot of stock in our names; we look for Job Titles and often think that gives us power, or add letters after our names to indicate our worth (like I will hopefully be adding “PMP” to my email signature soon!), or we lash out at our perceived enemies by calling them names to bring them down a notch or two. And that’s just silly.
I believe God, for those who put faith in Him, knows our fixation on names and directs us differently. While the names He is called in itself is lengthy and still does not quite capture His omnipotence and power, today I want to direct it to others in the Bible.
Abram, who was old and childless (a huge issue in his society), was renamed Abraham – “father of multitudes” – and the Bible says his line are as vast as the sand on the beach. Sarai was also renamed Sarah – “mother of many nations”. God saw and knew this even as Abram and Sarai decried their lack of children.
Jacob was renamed Israel – you know, the name that is now a country and home physically and spiritually for the Chosen People – and God proclaimed that he wrestled with God and men and prevailed. How can you be overwhelmed with shame and lack of worth when you think about that?
No matter what anyone calls me, the truth is I am the King’s Kid. Nothing can separate me from His love. And that, my friends, is really all that matters.