Full of confidence, I called home to mom to announce our new name of Revere. Mom was shocked.
"You did what? Oh no, you can't be serious. What's wrong with the name we gave you?"
She was full of apprehension. I thought about how the new names would put her genealogy charts in shambles. I could tell she thought we were doing it to somehow spite her.
"God has given us new names. Aren't you happy for us?"
There was a painful silence. Then she said we would always be the old names to her.
Rachel's mom reacted in a similar way. Parents typically resist when their children take on a new name. Those who are closest to us react the most negatively to our new identity. People we meet for the first time accept our new names without question. But it is much more difficult for those who knew us in our previous lives to understand that we are new creatures. They do not believe we have received a revelation from God. We perform few miracles with them - their unbelief prevents it.18
Becoming a new creature is a dividing sword. It will divide the households. It will divide the father from the son, the mother from the daughter.19 It will divide us from our friends.
The family of God is no longer the family the world recognizes. Our family is no longer our blood relatives - we are now of the household of God.20 Who is our mother? Who is our brother? Our mother and brother and sister are those who do the will of God.21
18 - Matthew 13:58
19 - Luke 12:51-53
20 - John 1:12-13 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name: who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.
21 - Matthew 12:50