A Good Name

Posted on March 1, 2013 by Matt West

“A Good name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favour rather than silver and gold”

I am a lucky man. I’ve known this for some time. I married a prize among prizes and have three incredible kids, all of whom are better than I deserve. That is easy to see and is commonly accepted by people who know and see me. But my blessings run much deeper.

We are all prisoners of those things to which our parents expose us. This can be positive or negative. Our perspective of normal is shaded by those things we see in our formative years. I’ll never forget the first time I began to realize the depth of my blessing. I was having a discussion with a godly man and good friend whose parents had built up such a negative reputation that he was unable to pursue an opportunity he might otherwise have had.

While I am truly saddened by this reality, I have come to discover it is not that uncommon In our world. I was speaking with a friend in another state just over a week ago, whose parents left him thousands of dollars of debt in his name.

Those examples are both parents who would, in many ways, be considered good parents. I’m not even talking about parents who are malicious toward their children, as was well discussed in this blog. These are just parents who failed to make a good family name for their children, which just makes life slightly more difficult.

I am really glad that I know of these things only on a second hand/theoretical level. I am frequently being introduced to people who know my parents and they are willing to give me a better chance because of it. As recently as yesterday, someone gave me a good business deal because of my dad. I have received work from people who trust me only because they know my mom.

Now why would I write this blog besides just to brag about my parents? Well bragging about them may be enough, but I think about what it means to pursue that biblical “good name” and I find that it is an easy concept for me to understand. It is what I want to leave behind for my children. It is the challenge I would have for anyone who might happen upon this blog post.

You see, whether it is your family, yourself, your business, your church or your Lord; anyone whose name you bear will be gathering information about that name from the things you do. Those things will be the impression people have when the name comes up. And building or maintaining that good name is something that should be done.

My friend, Jay Connors, once said, “live such that when others say bad things about you, no one will believe them.” That is what I want. I want to maintain that good name my parents fought for. I want to leave my kids that good name. I want to leave a good name in my business endeavors. I want people to think more of a church because we’re consistently conscious of having a good name. It is, after all, something to be chosen more so than loving favor, silver, or gold.

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One Response to “A Good Name”

  1. Curtis Heffelfinger
    Mar 02, 2013

    Very well put, Matt. Thanks so much for this reminder about the value of a good name!

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