This morning, I told a lady about our new baby Zero. She asked me, “How did you come up with the name?” I said, “A long, hard process!” And I mean it.

My kids are “CRSZ” — Chase, River, Snow, Zero — and I must be “crazy” to come up with those unique names. But in a word, I would describe the process of naming my kids as my “burden”.

I desire that my kids grow up not only to know God, but to be solid Christ-followers. Each of them can take on any personality, but one thing is non-negotiable: I want all my kids to have the ability to periodically stop and reflect about themselves, about their lives, and about God. “Be still and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:10) is not just for introverts, but also for extroverts, and all the somewhere-in-the-middle-verts as well.

For me, one of the best way I can leave them a legacy to remind them of this is to give them names with rich, multiple meanings, and that these names convey to them that they should live their lives for something far greater than themselves. For CRSZ, the main meanings are:

Chase – pursuing worthwhile goals
River – knowing that the source of your strength is from the Spirit
Snow – maintaining purity
Zero – finding your value and significance in God

So why do I say that these names are a “burden” to me? It’s because I keep thinking about them over and over and comparing their meanings to my life. I often feel like a hypocrite. For example, being Snow’s father, I feel it a burden to think of myself as the “father of purity” when I am so un-pure and so sin-full. Sometimes I feel tormented by these names, for example, when I make a bad choice in life to spend my time and energy pursuing something that’s worthless, and then I remember the meaning of Chase’s name, and it led to me to chide myself that I should’ve known better.

But while giving my kids these names, I realized that no human can keep these virtues perfectly. So behind it all, these names ultimately point to what kind of God our God really is:

Chase – the God who proactively pursues us even when we go after idols
River – the God who indwells us as the Holy Spirit
Snow – the God who cleanses our impurity and the only One who can deal with our sin problem
Zero – the God incarnate who emptied Himself and came to save us as Jesus

And I realize that God is so much more than just four statements. I guess if I have to express all that God is, I would need to have more children to capture all of the attributes and great works of God…… :)

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