BabiesShe will give birth to a Son, and you are to give Him the name Jesus, because He will save His people from their sins. Matthew 1:21


Celebrity couples seem to think they must choose the strangest and most unique baby names, as if the monikers they give their children will help them follow their parents’ path to fame more quickly. Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale named their second child Zuma Nesta Rock. The parents are mum on where the name came from. Bronx Mowgli is Pete Wenz and Ashlee Simpson’s son’s name. The middle name is the main character in Disney’s movie Jungle Book. Elon Musk and Canadian singer Grimes take the strange prize with their new son’s name, X Æ A-12. Grimes, whose real name is Claire Boucher, tweeted an explanation of the child’s name. The X is a math reference to the “unknown variable” in every formula. Æ is Grimes creative spelling of AI, which can refer to the couple’s love for each other (?) or “artificial intelligence” (take your choice, I suppose). And A-12 is a reference to the couple’s favorite aircraft, the Lockheed A-12 Archangel 1960’s spy plane. “No weapons, no defenses, just speed,” she wrote. “Great in battle but non-violent.” But their home state of California has a law requiring names use only the letters in the English alphabet. So the child might never be able to get a Social Security card or a driver’s license or find a personalized backpack. So much for fame and fortune.


I greatly prefer the divinely inspired names we find in the Bible. The most important one is Jesus, which means “Savior.” God’s angel told both Mary and Joseph (Jesus’ stepfather) to give the Child this name. “Christ” is a title more than a name, from the Greek word “Christos,” meaning “the anointed one,” also called the Messiah. Jesus is referred to as “Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6); “the Almighty One” (Revelation 1:8); “the Alpha and Omega, the First and Last, the Beginning and the End” (Revelation 22:13).  My favorite references is Hebrews 12:2, where Christ is described as “the Author (or Pioneer) and Perfecter” of our faith. There are many more names for Jesus, and all of them fit Him perfectly.


Holy Father, remind us of the meanings of Jesus’ many names as we praise You! Amen


Alone on a Colorado mountain, Meg Corrigan faced the unthinkable, a situation that almost ended her life. Hear the details of her astounding rescue from the hands of a gun-wielding attacker and how she walked off that mountain. Hers is a story of tragedy turned holy, a journey of sorrow and healing, a powerful message of hope in the darkest hour. In her memoir, Then I Am Strong: Moving From My Mother’s Daughter to God’s Child, Meg credits her resilience to the grace of God. She is also the author of Perils of a Polynesian Percussionist, tales based on her years as a drummer in a Hawaiian show band; and Saints With Slingshots: Daily Devotions for the Slightly Tarnished But Perpetually Forgiven Christian. The sequel, Saints With Slingshots TWO, will be released by the end of 2020. Meg is a retired college counselor, author, speaker, trainer and sexual assault survivor. She speaks to churches, civic groups, college students, mental health professionals and law enforcement personnel, as well as youth in juvenile facilities. Corrigan lives in Lake Elmo, Minnesota with her husband, Patrick and their formerly disenfranchised rescue dog Ginger. She loves to coax seemingly dead plants out of the soil in her yard. The couple have four daughters, ten grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. Contact her at MegCorrigan@comcast.net or www.MegCorrigan.com .




Basque SheepherderThe Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. Psalm 23:1


The Elko, Nevada area is home to Basque immigrants from Spain who came here in the 19th century to work as sheep herders. When I played drums in a Hawaiian band, we spent time in Elko. Many of these herdsmen would come in to hear our band play. We learned from a Basque named Mercedes Hoyos that their life herding sheep was not easy. From my book, Perils of a Polynesian Percussionist:


“You don’t have to know anything about sheepherding to recognize one of the northern Basques who (had) spent about three months out on the range, all alone with his sheep, until somebody finally came and relieved him of his duties so he could go into town for a few days. He would usually stay at a Basque boarding house…where he would have a long bath while his clothes were being laundered. Then, he’d be ready for a home-cooked meal of marmitako (Basque tuna stew) and Chacoli wine, maybe a Catholic mass or two, and certainly a quick confession with one of the local priests, to relieve himself of the burden of his sins…He’d had a bath and put on clean clothes, (but) there was still a strange odor about this man. He wore a long-sleeved red wool shirt, even though it was warm outside. His brown pants, also wool, were tucked into work boots and held up by suspenders. A San Francisco Giants baseball cap graced his full head of grayish brown hair.


“’Those mountains are called mata hombres. “Man killers is what they are! I was pretty much ready for a visit to town,’ Mercedes said….(‘I tend) ‘bout nine hundred sheep, mostly ewes. A few rams…and the ewes have dropped their lambs, since it’s summertime ….I have to stay right by the sheep, especially at night. There are lots of coyotes….I really care about each one of ‘em. If I find a dead lamb, well, I just start to cry.’”


Images of a fluffy lamb in the arms of Jesus disappeared as I listened to Mercedes Hoyos describe his hard life. The image we carry of our Lord as our shepherd must include the hard work, deep caring and responsibility a sheep tender brings to the job.


Lord, we are Your lambs and You care for us as a Good Shepherd. Amen