If you really want to impress somebody, remember their name after you meet them. It’s important, you know, to concentrate on somebody’s name and then try to repeat it several times in the conversation, “Yes, George. It’s nice to meet you, George, and say hi to your family, George.” Because, see, there’s nothing someone would rather hear than their own name. And they’ll just think you’re something really special if you can remember that name, because names are really important to people.

In fact, names are so important in our society they are protected by slander and libel laws. If someone publicly damages your name, and it’s something that isn’t true and that they can’t really defend, that could be worth millions of dollars in a lawsuit. Your name is really important!

Now, here’s something to think about: What kind of reaction does your name bring when it’s brought up in a group of people? Maybe a group of people who know who you are, maybe a little, maybe a lot, but you’re not in the room when your name comes up. What’s the reaction? See, I’m sure that it makes people feel some way!

Maybe there’s laughter when they think of your name, or maybe there’s respect. Maybe there’s like a shrug of the shoulders, “I don’t know.” Maybe it creates suspicion when they hear you’re involved, or maybe there’s tension, or maybe there’s peace, confidence. Your name gets a reaction.

I’m Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about “The Effect Your Name Has.”

Our word for today from the Word of God is about your name. Proverbs 22:1 – “A good name is more desirable than great riches. To be esteemed is better than silver or gold.” When the Bible talks about your name, it’s really talking about your reputation. What kind of reaction does your name or your reputation bring?

Interesting thing about reputation, a good one takes a long time to get and a very short time to lose. And as you know, a bad reputation is very easy to get, and then later on it can be very hard to lose. In fact, I’ve known people with a wonderful reputation – years that it took to build – and in a night, or a day, in one incident a reputation is lost. (Maybe you know people you can think of like that.) It’s worth much sacrifice; it’s worth a lot of self-denial; a lot of self-discipline to protect your good name. It’s the most valuable thing you have. That’s why our society protects it with laws.

I think a good name, like the Bible talks about here, belongs to people that you can always expect certain things from. See how you measure up with this checklist. First of all, you can always expect excellence in what they do. You don’t have to wonder if it’s going to be shoddy work or if they’re going to give it a half-hearted effort. Excellence – they’re committed to doing it in the big things and the little things. That’s a good name.

Secondly, people with a good name cause people to expect consistency from them; they’re faithful, they deliver. You know they’ll be there, they’ll have the same kind of quality, the same kind of commitment whether things are going bad, or whether they’re going well, or whether things are hard or easy, or whether there’s money or not; there’s going to be consistency. That’s a good name.

Thirdly, they’re known for their judgment. They don’t just jump into things; they’re not impulsive, they’re not glandular people, they ponder, they consider, they get the facts and they make responsible decisions that stand the test of time, not just look good for a day, a week, or a month. And then a good name, well, I think it belongs to people who are known for the truth, for integrity. You can always believe, you can always trust what they’re saying; you don’t have to divide it by two or try to get the truth or wonder if it’s really the facts. You can trust their word.

Your good name? Man, it’s worth everything. Don’t compromise it. Don’t risk it. Don’t put a mark on anyone else’s name either, because according to the Bible, if you’ve got a good name, you’re a moral millionaire.