Names and A Grateful Memorial Day

Share Now

My husband Ray’s full name is Raymond Wesley Notgrass. In my Memorial Day thoughts for you, I’d like to tell you why.

President Herbert Hoover places a wreath on the tomb of America’s Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery, May 30, 1929. Library of Congress, Prints & Photographs Division, photograph by Harris & Ewing, LC-DIG-hec-353.

I’ll start with the last name Notgrass and work my way forward. I am grateful that Ray gave me the name Notgrass to share with him. I don’t mind that I always have to repeat it when someone hears it for the first time. I don’t mind that I have to spell it when they write or type it. The name Notgrass belongs to my godly husband and it belonged to my godly father-in-law. That’s enough reason for me. I know that Ray holds his last name dear to his heart and would never do anything to shame it.

Ray’s middle name is a name of honor, too, because it belonged to his father Wesley.

Ray’s father chose Ray’s first name to honor Raymond Cooper who died in a plane crash in Italy during World War II. Raymond Cooper was a lifelong friend of Wesley Notgrass.

Ray tries to live up to his good name — all three parts of it. Our lives are the sum of our daily choices. In his daily choices, Ray has the opportunity to honor his godly father and to honor his father’s friend who gave his life to rescue people from Hitler’s oppression and to give people he didn’t know an opportunity for freedom. Ray believes he would be ungrateful if he did not strive to do that.

Wise parents train their children to create, keep, and nurture a godly name.

A good name is to be more desired than great wealth,
Favor is better than silver and gold.
Proverbs 22:1

Wise parents also realize that it is even more important to lead their children to Jesus, who told His disciples:

. . . rejoice that your names are recorded in heaven.
Luke 10:20

Wise parents also teach their children about the great Name of the Lord.

The name of the Lord is a strong tower;
The righteous runs into it and is safe.
Proverbs 18:10

They teach their children who Jesus is.

For this reason also, God highly exalted Him,
and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name,
so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow,
of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.
Philippians 2:9-11

They teach them what Jesus did for them.

Peter said to them, “Repent,
and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ
for the forgiveness of your sins;
and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”
Acts 2:38

They train their children where to go for help.

Pray, then, in this way:
Our Father who is in heaven,
Hallowed be Your name.
Matthew 6:9

You did not choose Me but I chose you,
and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit,
and that your fruit would remain,
so that whatever you ask of the Father in My name
He may give to you.
John 15:16



Share Now

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *