Only God knows how many angels exist; there are so many that they're likely innumerable by human beings. But some of the most powerful -- the archangels -- have names, thanks to the people they visited in ancient times who wanted to identify them.
When people named the angels, they usually used the suffix "el" (which means "in God") to honor the fact that God made and empowered angels. Then people constructed the rest of each angel's name to reflect a certain meaning.
What's particularly interesting to note is that most of the angels' names represent the type of work they do in the world. Consider the angel Raphael, for instance. His name means "God heals," because Raphael often works on God-given healing assignments, helping people who are suffering in body, mind, or spirit. Or, consider Michael. Since he is often engaged in the battle between good and evil, the meaning of his name ("Who is like God?") offers a challenge to those who doubt God's supreme power.
You probably use either your legal name or your nickname to identify yourself to other people. But have you ever considered what your spiritual name is? You can think of your spiritual name as a way of describing the unique ways you can contribute to the world, just like the angels' names describe the distinctive ways that they contribute.
It isn't hard to figure out what your spiritual name may be. First, just reflect on your God-given interests and talents. What do you most enjoy doing? What do you do best? Next, consider the opportunities God has given you to serve others, and how you can use your unique abilities to do so best. Finally, take action! Follow the angels' example of accepting God's assignments to help make this world a better place.
So get to know your spiritual name, and let the angels whose names we know inspire you to become a force for good in the world!
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