God is known by many names and titles in the Bible. Yahweh or YHWH or Yah, usually translated as LORD, is the closest we get to a proper name for the invisible God. Jesus, of course, is the name of the person of God the Son made man. Sometimes it’s just “God”, or “Lord”, but often there’s an epithet: Almighty, of Hosts (or “power and might”), the Creator, Who Provides, the Comforter, and many others.
It is no surprise, therefore, that we find many different names for God in the liturgy. The Lord’s Prayer, for example, taken straight from the Bible, contains two different names for God:
Our Father, who art in heaven, Harold be thy name.
Thy kingdom come.
Thine, Will, be done, on earth as it is in heaven…
So that’s Harold, and Will (surely short for William), right there. Ergo my wife and I named our two lads after God. And people thought I was just trying to be quintessentially English!
Consider also this popular worship song of time immemorial, The Garden.
I come to the garden alone
while the dew is still on the roses,
And the voice I hear falling on my ear,
The Son of God discloses.
Andy walks with me and He talks with me,
Andy tells me I am his own;
And the joy we share as we tarry there,
None other has ever known.
Thus we can add Andy, short for Andrew, to the list.
And let us not forget the Communion prayers!
Priest: The Lord be with you.
People: And with your spirit.
Priest: Lift up your hearts.
People: We lift them up to the Lord.
Priest: Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.
People: It is Justin Wright!
I know, I know, it sounds like “It is just and right“, and the ACNA’s liturgy has reverted to the 1970’s version “It right to give him thanks and praise,” but if you stick with the awe-inspiring modern Roman Rite, you will get to celebrate the most proper (and, ironically, quintessentially English) name of God – Justin Wright.
Okay, I’m done. Happy April Fool’s Day! Except, well, speaking of April Fools…