Most of you by now know what my “nickname” used to be, don’t you?
Well, let me refresh your memory. My nickname used to be a moth. In Amharic, the direct translation is: “Dinner of Fire.” (By the way, this is one of the zillion nicknames I’ve earned for myself so far.)
After I learned the English name of “Dinner of Fire”, I began reading about moths. Let me share with you some of the things I learned.
A moth is like a butterfly, but it is not a butterfly even if it looks like one from far away. It can be beautiful like a butterfly. However, a moth is different from a butterfly in many respects.
A butterfly puts its wings vertically up over its backs. It hides nothing! No secret with it!
A moth, on the other hand, puts its wings in “a tent-like” fashion so that everything will be hidden from a sight.
A butterfly loves to move around in daytime. It enjoys the daylight and the sun. And it doesn’t move around in the dark. Darkness is not suitable for a butterfly.
On the other hand, a moth rarely comes out at daytime. It enjoys the dark. If you see a moth in the day, it definitely covers everything from you so that you think that it is a butterfly. (In a way, it is like a moth has lots and lots of secrets, making it too risky for it to come out in the day. It always covers it up all nicely so that nobody knows its real personality – my version of explaining a moth’s story.)
But are you connecting the dots? I hope so!
Finally, one particular difference between a moth and a butterfly is the nature of their antennas. Here is the biggie. Pay attention!
So, a butterfly has “long clubbed antennas” which help it navigate its way carefully in the daytime while a moth is missing this kind of “clubbed antennas”.
Since a moth maneuvers its way in the nighttime, if it sees daylight, it jumps into it not knowing what it is. That is why it tends to burn in the fire.
Duh! It has no “clubbed antennas” which signal danger from far away.
Yes, I used to be called “Dinner of Fire” since I was curious to try anything and everything. And trying to control me and my actions was unthinkable because I used to find a way. Darkness was my best friend since it covers everything in “a tent-like” fashion.
One day, one of my sisters who had an acne problem had a prescription from her skin doctor. It was a face cream. After she applied the cream two or three times, I noticed that the top of her skin was peeling off and beautiful skin was lying underneath.
So, I got really curious to try it. Knowing her little sister’s tendency, she said, “Missy, please don’t try this. It will hurt your face. After all you have no acne and you don’t need this kind of thing.”
Yeah, I laughed to myself (in my head) while I said to her, “Oh, no way! I won’t do such a thing.”
Mind you, my face didn’t even have a tiny spot on it. But, when my sister stepped out, I applied the cream. Nobody noticed it because it tends to disappear into skin. The next morning my sister saw my face before I got a chance to see it. I didn’t know that it had already started peeling off my skin.
I know that is just crazy. I will keep you here forever if you want me to tell you all the crazy things I did that earned me the name “Dinner of Fire”.
I already told you last time how my dad changed my nickname from a Moth (“Dinner of Fire”) to “My Wise Daughter”. I didn’t tell him to call me like that but he one day changed my name from a Moth to Wise because my dad noticed that my antennas were becoming “clubbed”.
May all the glory and praise be to Jesus who changed me to the point of changing my name. What else can give a person “clubbed antennas” other than the Word and Spirit of God!
I know, I still have a lot I need to change to be wise, but compared to who I was yesterday, wise may fit me well today. I still notice some kind of foolishness in me and I have a lot to learn about what it means to be wise. Following foolishness as my lifestyle has long been gone from me, but sometimes I see it creeping into my life without warning. So I always tend to surround myself with wise people so that I will save myself from my dangerous and curious tendencies. Yes, I strive to keep my name.
Any light used to excite me, but little did I know that fire also emits light. I didn’t know that fact until I got burned real good by it and survived with third degree burns, if you know what I mean.
Oh, now, I fear any light from far away. I now have “clubbed antennas.” If I see the light, I gaze on it for a long time to see if it is really light before I jump in it. I guess that is how I got my name changed. I still ask God to give me a praiseworthy lifestyle so that it will earn me a better name than “Wise.” I crave a name such as “Imitator of God,” or something of that nature.
My message for today is, then, this: Beloved, what was your name yesterday? What is your name today? Did you get a name change?
Remember, we don’t make a name for ourselves, but our lifestyles, manners, behaviors, hobbies, characters and habits do. If we are in Christ, it is very important that we get a name change; if not, it is always good to go back to zero and start all over again.
Jesus’ Disciples never called themselves “Christians” or called their gathering “Church of Follower of Jesus Christ.” Oh, no, they didn’t, my dear! The people around them, (actually, unbelievers) called them Christians (which means “follower of Jesus Christ”) because their lifestyle gave them up (Acts 11:26). They were living just like Jesus Christ used to. Their lifestyle was exactly like Jesus’s. They were speaking like Jesus and so on.
My friend, what kind of name did your lifestyle earn you so far? Jesus is always in the work of changing names. If we jump into His River of mercy and grace, we sure will get a name change. The Bible says, His mercies are new every morning (Lamentation 3:23). ///