What's in a Name?

what is in a name

So why the name Resurrection Life? If you scroll down to the ‘I am New’ tab and click on ‘Name,’ you’ll learn about one major reason why we came up with this name. But this blog is intended to provide a longer answer. Coming up with a name is really hard as each name requires a vision and mission focus. However, as hard as it is, it has increasingly become a necessity because the name gives a sense of identity, direction and purpose. Pitching a real name and vision for those considering being a part of this ministry has proven very helpful. Along the way of picking a name, we threw around a number of others:
Living Water Community Church
Jacob’s Well
Church of the Cross
Ascension Church
Resurrection Way
The Way
The Ascent
Church of the Redeemer
Cross Wake Church
The Wake
Christ’s Church

I can give you more examples, but this list gives you a good cross section of what we have thought and prayed about. Someday, if we ever plant again, perhaps we’ll use one of these other names. So why Resurrection Life? Well, we tried to balance out two words that capture both classic and contemporary names that could balance well together. Southern culture has a mix of both the classic and contemporary. The word resurrection begins with Christ. Christ’s resurrection includes his rising from the dead all the way to his ascension to heaven. He is now the resurrected and ascended King. It’s more than an event, it became a new way of living. In that new existence as the resurrected Lord, Jesus conquered sin, he continued to proclaim the coming Kingdom to his disciples for some time, all along with a transformed body. There is so much hope and optimism in that new state, and it is a reality we are invited to experience as well by grace through faith here and now. At the same time, there is the recognition that without the crucifixion, there is no resurrection. We are called to daily deny ourselves, pick up our cross, and follow Jesus. We do not follow Jesus to Golgotha and stay there. Our sins do (and we have to continue to bring them daily too...), but not us! We move on to rise with Christ daily as well. It’s the picture of baptism that sets the stage with the hope that God will draw other people to Himself through Resurrection Life.

Other practical reasons exist as to why we called this new ministry Resurrection Life: feedback from mentors, friends, and family was invaluable. The context and people of southwest Wake County was another huge factor. Personal introspection and wrestling through who I am as a person and pastor was part of the discernment process. Other factors include feedback from local church planters and pastors, names of churches that already exist, and valuable random discussions here and there along the way. Another major contribution was the study of deeper cultural idols that exist here in the south and finding a name that will speak hope into these problems.

But at the end of the day, after conceiving ideas and reflecting and praying about them, a decision needed to be made. Perhaps if the process continued for a while yet, we would have another name. However, this part of the process had to come to an end, and God knew that. The Spirit brought us through a carwash of information, ideas, names, visions, and discussions, but at the end of a carwash the car needs to emerge. It would be silly for the car to stay put. So the car drove out and we press on with the Spirit’s power. We continue to pray that the Holy Spirit is working through our work. We continue to pray for reliance on Him, and pray that it’s not us (read: ‘me’) in the drivers seat.