My covenant with you is this:
you are to become the father of a host of nations.
No longer shall you be called Abram;
your name shall be Abraham,
for I am making you the father of a host of nations. (Gn 17:4-5)
When God comes into our lives, we become new people.
This is probably best exemplified by the taking on of a new name.
In today’s first reading, Abram is brought into a new covenant with God. In the process, God promises to make him a host of nations. Abram became a radically different person. Hence, his name changed. He was no longer Abram. He became Abraham.
When Saul encountered the Lord on the road to Damascus, he entered an intense period of introspection where, in the process, he came to know the Risen Lord deeply. Saul was no longer the same person who hunted Christians. Saul was gone. Hence, he changed his name to Paul.
When men and women enter religious orders, they often take on a new name to show that they are a new person. Their former way of life is eschewed as they strive to follow the Lord more closely.
God has come into our lives. We are a new reality because of that.
We may not have changed our names; however, our way of living in this world should be radically different because we are now living for the Lord rather than for ourselves.
FAITH ACTION: When God came into our lives, we became a new creation. Live in that reality today. Resist returning to the former way of life.