Wednesday, June 06, 2012

What's in Your Name?

Karen Witemeyer's heroine in Short-Straw Bride is Meredith. A writing friend, also called Meredith, commented on Monday's interview to say she had never read a book with her name in it.

As I read through Karen's link with the first chapter, I noticed the heroine is also called Meri. This made me smile. I love to see how people shorten, or twist familiarity into people's names.

I've always been Dorothy, Dot or Dotti. During our courting days, a little girl in my Beloved's home church used to call me Dortha.

I like that. Dortha the Author!

She was onto something, that little chickadee.

Growing up, two brothers in my street banded together with my own dear brother, to call me Porridge. Yes, they called me gluey breakfast food, that tastes awful without sugar and berries. For no good reason, other than I hated porridge and they fell upon a 'true insult'. (Rest easy, I love porridge now.)

But how I despised being called Porridge then. And how perfectly this suited my three tormentors. The more I squirmed, the more they ran around the back yard singing, 'Porridge, Porridge.' Now I think it's funny, and I've tucked that memory away to use in a book one day for some poor girl I will place at the mercy of the boys next door.

My favourite nickname is Mama D. This is what my kids call me, as do many of their friends. It warms my heart to spread my wings over these chicks at my table as they share my food and stories.

God has many names for His loved ones. He calls us believers and saints. He calls us by name and inscribes it it in the palm of His hand. He beckons us as children and heirs.

I have redeemed you, I have called you by name. You are mine, He says of His people in Isaiah 43.

Do you have a nickname? Has someone morphed the beautiful, well-considered name your parents gave you into a quirky pet name?

Don't be shy. It couldn't be worse than Porridge.

(photo source  - the murmuring cottage)