“Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who is victorious, I will give.. a white stone with a new name written on it, known only to the one who receives it.” (Rev 2: 17)

In this intriguing passage in the strangest of New-Testament Scriptures, the Book of Revelation, the Lord the Holy Spirit speaks about “the one who is victorious,” the believer who co-carries the victory of Christ’s life-giving Cross. By walking the journey of the cross on the cross’s terms, i.e., Christ’s self-giving love, humility, patience, courage and wisdom, the believer walks through life’s difficulties in the quiet victory of the Spirit.

And “that person,” the “victorious” one, receives a revelation, “a white stone” reminiscent of the stone tablets received by Moses, when God revealed Himself, His character, in His commandments. The “new name” written on the white stone, “known only to the one who receives it,” is each and every believer’s special calling or vocation, through which he or she reveals God’s character in this world, by walking His cross-carrying journey. Just as we are all called “to clothe” ourselves “with the new self, created according to the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness,” (Eph 4: 24), we are all given “talents” in different ways and different measure (Mt 25: 14-30). Discovering what those “talents” are, what our “new name” is, is a special gift of the Holy Spirit.

Today let me have “ears to hear”; let me hear “what the Spirit says to the churches,” as elevated and strange as it may sound to me, in the Book of Revelation. And let me ask for the gift of walking my own journey, being my God-given self, “the new self” in Him and His name. Love to all of you from Vienna, and Happy Wednesday, Sister Vassa