Lucky or Blessed?
Recently, I had a conversation with a Chinese friend of mine. She said that she sees some things as being lucky and some things as being unlucky. Specifically, there are some things about her name that she doesn’t like.
In China, one’s name has a specific meaning, and Chinese parents usually try to choose a favorable name for their child. However, this name can be either a benefit or a burden to the child, depending on how people perceive the name. A person with a certain name might feel unlucky all his life because he has a name that is perceived negatively.
In the Bible, one’s name is associated with one’s character or personality, and a good name is highly valued. For example,
A good name is to be more desired than great wealth, Favor is better than silver and gold. –Proverbs 22:1, NASB
However, we cannot control how other people view us, and we cannot control what other people say about us. Therefore, our name, or character, can be tarnished or corrupted by other people even if we have done nothing wrong. In the following verse, we are told what will be given to those who “overcome.” The word “overcome” refers to those who endure difficulties and keep their faith in God.
‘He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes, to him I will give some of the hidden manna, and I will give him a white stone, and a new name written on the stone which no one knows but he who receives it.’ –Revelation 2:17, NASB
The following quote from the internet tells what the “white stone” in the previous verse represents.
The second picture represented by the white stone is that of a voting ballot. Many sources refer to the custom of using stones as a means used by jurors of casting votes after arguments have been heard in a trial. A white stone signified a vote for acquittal, while a black one meant a vote for the defendant to be condemned. –Peter Anderson
In other words, the “white stone” means that the overcomers are viewed as guiltless and pure. The “new name” means that the overcomers will have a new character or personality that is untarnished and uncorrupted.
This verse reveals the benefit of having a pure heart:
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. –Matthew 5:8, NASB
God does not have a physical body, but the pure in heart will “see” God in the sense of knowing or experiencing Him. I also believe that everyone will eventually “see” God. In this world, people can be divided into different groups based on their characters, but it is only time that separates people and makes them seem different from each other. In eternity, in heaven, we will all be the same and know the same things.
In conclusion, we cannot control many things about our life or name. However, when each of us overcomes, we will be given a white stone that signifies our guiltlessness and purity. In fact, we are guiltless no matter what we do because we are still as God created us. God created us in His image, and we are love as God is love. However, we will not see ourselves as guiltless until we overcome and our vision has been corrected by the Spirit. At that time, we will not see ourselves as lucky or unlucky, for luck has to do with things that we cannot always control. Instead, we will see ourselves as eternally blessed by God because He is holy and He created us in His image as holy and pure beings.