With the first installment of Flickering Lights coming out next week, I thought I would do a Flickering Lights related post. Now, I know what you’re thinking: “Haven’t you been doing a lot of Flickering Lights related posts recently?”
My response would have to be: “So?”
Guys, I’m only mildly obsessed with Flickering Lights.
Anyway, this week, I thought I would bring you the most important thing I’ve learned while writing Flickering Lights.
A name of God and what it means.
When I was doing some worldbuilding and brainstorming, I tried to come up with a name for the being that represents God in Flickering Lights. At first I was tossing around “the Light.” I mean, this story is about light. I figured that “the Light” would be a very simple way to refer to God.
It didn’t work.
So then I brilliantly came up with “the Morning Light” because somehow adding “morning” to “light” was going to make it fit.
Alas, that incredible idea also failed. *insert long, aggravated sigh*
I prayed about it, and then I started thinking along the lines of Adonai (Hebrew for “Lord”) and El Shaddai (Hebrew for “God Almighty”). This inspired me to do a search for more of God’s Hebrew names.
That’s when I found El Roi.
At first, I decided that El Roi wasn’t going to work because it has nothing to do with light. It means, “the God Who sees” or “the God Who sees me.” Yeah, seeing is great and all, but it wasn’t like, “the God Who illuminates the night” or something light-ish like that. I did more searching, and I kept running into El Roi. It wouldn’t leave me alone! I threw up my hands (figuratively).
I would read the passages where God is called El Roi and (maybe) think about using it (it’s so ridiculous how I think I can tell God that I’ll “think” about doing something…).
As it turns out, El Roi appears once in all of Scripture.
Genesis 16:13 – So she called the name of the Lord Who spoke to her, “You are a God of seeing,” for she said, “Truly I have seen Him Who looks after me.”
Genesis 16 is the tale of Hagar, Sarai’s Egyptian slave who fled into the wilderness to escape her mistress. When God spoke to her and promised to protect her, Hagar called Him El Roi, saying, “You are a God of seeing…”
Now, Hagar’s story isn’t really a pick-me-up, ah-let-me-go-plant-a-church sort of account. At least it wasn’t until I thought about what it means to be seen the way God can see.
He sees me in my plight, but He also sees me in my sin. And He loves me despite what He sees.
It’s as simple and (personally) mind-blowing as that.
So I picked El Roi.
Yeah, it has jack squat to do with light, but it’s a name that shows the depths of His grace. And after a good while, I realized that that’s what’s important.
I hope you all have a good week!
Coming next week – Flickering Lights 1: Light from Chimo.