I’ve never been fond of my first name “Barbara.” For one thing, it gets misspelled. Thank you, Barbra Streisand, for being miserly with your A’s. For another, nicknames. “Barb-wire.” “Barbie Doll.” Even the hated “Babs.” I cringe at them all. Lastly, I’ve known since I was a kid that the name “Barbara” means “stranger in a foreign land,” an outsider, one who doesn’t belong. It’s a meaning of alienation. At least that’s the way I’ve always looked at it. Recently, I ran across a deeper meaning for “Barbara.” John Dehnart on his name meaning website (reference available)says “…but when you think about the Biblical concepts about being a stranger in a foreign land, we often find that God’s purpose for that person was to bring His messages of truth and salvation. We also find that a person chosen to be a missionary has the qualities of courage and determination.” I’ve never thought of my name in that manner before. I’ll never be a missionary in a foreign land, but I’m owning my name just a little bit more these days. I wore candy cane socks today. I own them too.
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