I Want a Nation: Australia and Oceania

Our last installment will be for all those incredible little islands in the South Pacific. Australia is the official continent, but Oceania will include all the people groups in the islands in the Pacific Ocean.

I’ve had the chance to visit Australia and New Zealand and there’s an incredible culture that is a clash of both the familiar and foreign. The Maori people of New Zealand for example are incredible warriors. The haka or tribal war dance is performed by New Zealand’s professional rugby team the All Blacks. Using mere intimidation, the warriors prove their fortitude by stomping, yelling and fierce body language.

The people I’ve met also have a beautiful expression of intimacy. Individuals in close relationship will put their foreheads together as a greeting and exchange breath. Literally inhaling what you’ve exhaled as a way to say “what is inside you I receive inside me.”

Australia was actually used by Britain as a veritable prison on the other side of the world. It was populated by the criminals of society who lived alongside the indigenous Aboriginal people and established a society that was tenuous at best.

The island nations have been populated by many European explorers and there is a wide mixture of cultures in the island nations. However it’s a place of cohabitation.

Australia – unknown southern land Fiji – home of the lookouts

Kiribati – trusted, bright son Marshall Islands – steward or caretaker of the horses

Micronesia – small islands Nauru – “I go to the beach.”

New Zealand – land of the long white cloud; sea land

Palau – indirect replies Papua New Guinea – frizzy hair, burnt or blackened

Samoa – holy center Solomon Islands – peaceable, perfect, one who recompenses

Tonga – southern, friendly islands Tuvalu – eight standing with one another

Vanuatu – our land

DISTANT SHORES AND THE ISLAND WILL SEE YOUR LIGHT AS IT RISES ON US!

May you be peaceful and unified! You are welcome to show us your beauty and use your voice to call the world to discovery and peace!

I Want a Nation: Asia

We’re in the home stretch here. I’ve held off on Asia because of a couple different reasons, the first is that Asia intrigues me more than just about any other continent, and second, because it’s absolutely huge. The variety of dominant cultures contained within the continent of Asia is more dramatic than just about anywhere on earth.

The middle eastern, soviet, Indian, and mosaic of oriental cultures notwithstanding, the variety of dominant religious hubs is among the most pronounced of anywhere else. Three of the world’s most popular religions call Asia their home. Hinduism, Islam and Buddhism all have their roots planted firmly in this area of the world and cultures in Asia have their distinction as much from their preferences and tastes as they do from their religions (or lack thereof when considering the strong atheistic stance some countries take).

Asia

muddy or silty, rising light of the East, resurrection

It’s marvelous to consider how a clash of such dominant cultures exist side by side and share a prophetic name. As with all the continent’s we’ve looked at, there are a variety of opinions about how and why the continent received its name. “Muddy” is a strong picture and could be descriptive on a number of levels.

In considering the Buddhism of eastern Asia for example, differing countries have differing stances on Buddhist doctrine. It plays out in the mixtures of these religions with common folk religions and superstitions. However, I believe a case can be made that the inhabitants of Asia, regardless of their religious affinity, understand the idea of devotion. Nowhere have I found such contrition and sincerity than those who practice Islam, Hinduism or Buddhism. It has been a convicting journey as I consider the sacrifices and disciplines I employ for my own religious stances.

And yet, written in the name is another meaning. Long has Asia been referred to as “the East.” It’s even said in Luke 2 that “kings from the East” followed a star which led them to Bethlehem. The rising light of the sun is the promise of a new day, a “resurrection” even. As we look at the diversity of beliefs, we can stand on one promise: there is a dawning light in Asia.

ASIA! WE CALL TO YOU AS CHRIST DID TO LAZARUS! COME FORTH!

Forsake your ways and commit your sincere, contrite hearts to the one true God. The Creator has a desire for intimacy with you. Live no longer as slaves. CLEAR THE MUDDY WATERS and walk forth clean and unblemished. From the middle east to the frozen north to the far orient BE RESURRECTED and show us all what new life truly means!

Afghanistan – land of the Afghans Armenia – assemble or create

Azerbaijan – land protected by the pagan holy fire Bahrain – the two seas

Bangladesh – land of the sun god Bhutan – highlands, land of the thunder dragon

Brunei – “there!” Burma/Myanmar – fast, tough, strong China – land of silk

Cambodia – weak, the least, unshaken East Timor – east island Georgia – tiller of the land

India – region of the Indus river Indonesia – east Indian islands

Iran – home of the free Iraq – land between the rivers Jordan – descend

Israel – land of the people who struggle with God Japan – land of the rising sun

Kazakhstan – independent-rebellious-wanderer-brave-free

Korea (North/South) – lofty, walled city, center Kuwait – fortress built near water

Kyrgyzstan – land of 40 tribes Laos – land of a million elephants, son of a pagan god

Lebanon – white, milk Malaysia – hill town Maldives – palace islands, garland

Mongolia – eternal fire Nepal – those who domesticate cattle

Oman – settled man Pakistan – (an acronym of the 8 major people groups of the area)

Philippines – land of King Philip (lover of horses) Qatar – port

Russia – land of the rowers Saudi Arabia – empire of the constellations Singapore – lion city

Sri Lanka – holy island Taiwan – terraced bay Tajikistan – leopard or tiger

Thailand – land of the humans Turkmenistan – land of the Turk-like people

Uzbekistan – home of the free Vietnam – south Viet Yemen – right hand

I Want a Nation: Europe

Getting back to our series on the continents and countries of the world brings us north to the epicenter of much of our recent historical and even religious development. This may be one of the most challenging areas of the world to talk about en masse considering everything from English to Soviet to Germanic to Roman to Baltic to even Middle Eastern histories must be considered (and many, many more). Even with such a melting pot of pronounced and established cultures living so closely side by side, I believe there may be an overarching journey that the continent has traversed.

Europe didn’t receive much attention in world history until after the time of Christ (sure you could consider Greek or Viking history, but we’ll consider the discussion continent-wide for now). But in the last two thousand years, we’ve seen a lot of action. From empires to kingdoms to regimes to wars there’s been a lot of movement. The evolution of technology, innovation, intellect, academics, politics, and a host of other developments, Europe has made an undeniable contribution to our world.

There’s a chatter around the continent as of late that Europe has moved into a place of “post-Christianity.” (The United States is not far behind FYI.) Atheism is at an all time high and a predisposed disdain or indifference toward the things of God is palpable. I’m convinced that missions in Europe is one of the most challenging mission fields on the planet. God bless those of you who are seeing fruit through European missions, I have a deep level of respect for your investment and contribution.

Europe

land of the setting sun (the “West”), wide face, broad eye

As with “Africa,” Europe was a hard name to break down. There are a host of different interpretations and etymological breakdowns for the word. The most frequent I came across in my research, however, was “land of the setting sun.” When compared to Asia (known widely as the “East”) it was noted for its contrast. Europe was West; Asia was East. Simple.

And yet, not so simple. The prophetic angle to this takes some time to look into. The setting sun is a picture of closure, it’s the end of the day. Yet, it’s the beginning of night. If I were analyzing this as a personal name, I’d look at it through this lens: descriptive, redemptive and as a charge or responsibility.

The dark of night breeds its own temptations and reputations. Scripture talks often about the differences between light and dark and especially the cautions against the “night.” If “descriptive,” we should look at the current state of things: what darkness do we see. Darkness is much easier to expose and expel if you know where it is. I think about the Red Light districts in Amsterdam or the fact that Moldova is the 2nd highest exporter of human slaves of any country in the world and I see darkness. I’ll revisit this in a second.

Second, if names are redemptive, then they are given as hope. It’s a beacon for us to always know that where there are pitfalls there always remains a best hope in God’s eyes. To whatever depths the darkness has gone, there is always hope of the sunrise to come.

Third, there’s a responsibility tied up in prophetic names. If this is true, than Europe holds a responsibility, which I believe many have seen and taken on, to show the people of the world how to navigate through a night. Not all of Europe lives in darkness, there is a strong remnant and history and proclamation currently underway.

MAY THE LIGHT SHINE!

From your coasts to your mountains to your back alleys, may the light and truth of God shine forth! Show us the way Europe!

I wanted to look into some specific countries and see what their names held as well. Here are some names to consider:

Albania – land of understanding, land of eagles Andorra – to walk the forest

Austria – Eastern march Belarus – white Russia; free; pure

Belgium – to swell with anger; bright; dazzling Bulgaria – the land that is shaken, land of disorder, split off

Bosnia and Herzegovina – land of running water; land of the duke

Croatia – warriors with horn-clad armor, mountaineers Cyprus – copper

Czech Republic – land of the Czechs (a famous legend) Denmark – the boundary, forest

England – people of the narrow waters, people of the meadow Estonia – land to the east of the sea

Finland – land of the wanderers, people of the fen Germany – the People’s Land; neighbor, battle-cry

France – spear, free, land of foreigners Greece – to grow old

Great Britain – the land of many trees Hungary – alliance of the 10 tribes

Iceland – land of ice Ireland – the fertile ground Italy – bull

Kosovo – field of blackbird Latvia – boundary land Liechtenstein – light stone

Lithuania – unite, pour/spill, lake, seashore, a rainy place

Luxembourg – little castle Macedonia – the tall ones

Malta – the land of honey, a haven Moldova – dust, mud Monaco – single dwelling

Montenegro – black mountain, restoring, harvest Netherlands – low lands, hollow, wooded land

Norway – northern passage Poland – open field, man who plows virgin soil

Portugal – port, to heat, beautiful Romania – Roman realm

Russia – land of the rowers Scotland – land of the forest warriors (loose translation)

Spain – land of the rabbits Sweden – land of one’s own kin

Switzerland – land of the Swiss (to burn) Turkey – strong Wales – land of foreigners

Ukraine – marches and borderlands Vatican City – city on Vatican hill, prophesy

Join the group and leave a comment prophesying over the countries of Europe. God’s moving there friends. It can’t hurt for us to speak some life over places and people that have become so near and dear to some of our hearts. Speak it out.

I Want A Nation

As I’ve been praying through how to follow my series on Prophetic Names, I’ve been drawn to another place where my heart finds its passion: the nations of the world.

Many of you who read this blog share this passion. The nations of the world are a mysterious, magical place. The canvas of this earth is covered with every shade of melanin and personality imaginable. The canvas is ripped in some places, taped together in others, some lines have been erased and redrawn more times than can be counted, and the piece itself is in a constant state of being colored and shaded into the masterpiece it was always intended to be.

The world isn’t a puzzle that’s being recreated from a picture on the front of the box. It’s an unveiling we’re all waiting for but are content to watch in progress.

I’ve done some research that I want to unpack with you all on how we should be prophesying over the nations and continents on this earth.

Psalms 2:8 has been an inspiring verse for me as of late. “Ask of me and I will make the nations your inheritance, the ends of the earth your possession.”

If we’re to inherit the earth, the nations and people, the earth in all its beauty and splendor, my recommendation is that we examine what we have coming.

In my next several posts, I want to examine the prophetic names given to the continents on this planet. How did they get these labels? What do they mean? How do we interpret these meanings in light of our present-day reality

I believe in two fundamental truths:

1) This world is full of UNACCEPTABLE REALITIES and we as the body of Christ must accept this fact and the responsibility that comes with it.

2) This world is WORTH FIGHTING FOR and eventually INHERITING. God has always believed this and has promised it to us. He wants us to join in the stewardship of it because He intends for us to participate in the creation of that which we’ll one day inherit…just like he did with Adam in the garden.

Let’s look at the places that are close to our heart. I think you’ll like what we see.

Prophetic Names: For Your Consideration

This has been such an amazing series to walk through with you all.  Meanings are one thing, but prophetic destiny is another.  Your name is more than just a description, it’s a responsibility, it’s an identity and it’s you.

For my last post in this series, I wanted to share with you some names that I haven’t come across from any of you but that I’ve found that I really liked.  It’s funny to hear a name that sounds old or maybe even sounds funny, but woven into its meaning is something so rich!

I wanted to share with you 10 names whose meanings I like and ones whose legacies I find deeply prophetic.

Donald – Don, Donny, Donnie

“one who is the leader of nations” or “world leader”

I find this name personally inspiring because of the calling I believe I have on my own life.  I’m inspired by the idea of having a big enough anointing, a significant enough destiny, and a specific enough purpose to touch not just a person or community but the entire world.

Wyatt

“guide”

I like the destiny wrapped up in this name.  It presumes wisdom (for how else will you take people through the journey?).  It presumes successful experiences (you must have completed your own journey to effectively take others through theirs).  It’s a name of noble purpose and responsibility.

Clive

“he who lives near the cliffs”

Maybe it’s because I’m on a “fear” kick right now, but I’m inspired by this name.  When I was in Ireland a few years ago I got to go to the Cliffs of Donagal.  They were magnificent and dangerous and majestic.  There’s something about cliffs that I find powerfully prophetic.  It’s only when we fling ourselves off the cliff that we discover if God really is trustworthy, if He is who He says He is.  This act of courage and trust changes our lives forever.  May we never venture too far away from the cliffs.

Carlton – Carl

“from the free man’s town”

I immediately thought of Fresh Prince of Bel Aire (don’t act like you didn’t too…) but when I came across this name I was struck by the meaning.  I actually tried to find names that had to do with freedom.  Many names had to do with victory, but not actually freedom.  It’s possible my line of work makes me sensitive to those in need of freedom, but if I were to prophesy a namesake over someone, Carlton (a “free man”) would be an admirable choice.

Teresa – Theresa, Terry, Terri, Teri, Reese, Reesa, Resa

“harvester”

I’ve found and even preached some consolation for ministry which is merely “planting seeds.”  What you’re usually saying is that you didn’t see much fruit but your endeavor still had value.  Planting seeds has its purpose, but the harvest is really what we all look forward to most!  I hope a woman with this namesake would find tremendous purpose in being a “harvester.”

Penelope – Penny, Nel, Nels

“weaver of dreams”

I feel like this name gets used as that name when you’re trying to think of a ridiculous name.  It’s got a funny cadence to it, yet when I saw its meaning, I gained a new level of respect.  I haven’t found a name that reflects this idea of weaving dreams.  It’s such a powerful name and admirable charge.  Our generation has forgotten how to dream.  We’re lazy and unmotivated.  We don’t know what to do or where to go or how to do it when we get there.  This name is a charge to begin dreaming again.

Gabriel – Gabe

“able bodied man” or “hero of God”

Not only is this meaning powerful (“hero of God” … really?!) but there’s also the namesake of an angel wrapped up in this name.  Gabriel was a messenger.  He was entrusted with the word of God.  He’s the one who appeared to Mary encouraging her to have faith and believe that the miraculous, the IMPOSSIBLE was about to happen.

Josiah – Joe, Si

“the Lord burns/the fire of the Lord” or “the Lord heals”

Names that have alternate meanings have actually been fairly common in my research.  However, I’ve tried to pray prophetically into how the meanings might be connected.  Here I see “cauterization” or healing by burning.  You cauterize a wound to stem the blood flow and to seal a breach.  The “fire” here I think can also mean what it did for the Biblical eight year old King in Scripture.  Josiah is one of the only kings in Israel or Judah to make a thunderous statement about righteousness.  The failures of past kings were remedied by this young man of conviction and he was blessed because of it.

Gideon

“he that bruises or breaks” or “the destroyer”

So maybe there’s a trend here in these last couple names, but I’ll admit I like the power contained within them!  Gideon was a mighty warrior.  You remember the story, he puts the fleece out to get a word from God (I actually see this as doing an injustice to his faith, he wouldn’t trust God’s word to his heart and he put God to the test) and once he receives his confirmation he systematically whittles down his fighting force to the original 300 (take that Hollywood) and wins this unbelievable battle.  Gideon overcame fear, he learned to trust impossible assignments from the Lord and he went out victorious in the face of certain failure.

Issachar – Char, Issa

“reward, recompense”

The meaning of this name is okay, but taking a prophetic look at this name has had me inspired for over a decade.  In 1 Chronicles 12:32 there is a description of men from the tribe of Issachar.  They are described as “men who knew and understood the times and knew what Israel should do.”  Wow…I love this.  I’ve actually prayed this blessing over my own life.  Just like Solomon whose only request of the Lord was wisdom was an entire group of leaders who were wise, savvy and whose counsel was sound and respected.

Just because I don’t want to leave any out, here were a few other names I liked:

Ronald / Reginald – advisor to the king

Case -bringer of peace

Aiden – fiery

Rhys – fiery

Neal/Neil – champion

Riley – valiant

Next week we’ll start something new.  Stay tuned!

%d bloggers like this: