I recently heard a speaker talk about the importance of a person’s name. Jesus was a vision caster; he impacted the lives of his disciples by renaming them based on the vision of who they could be. Larry Crabb says, “A vision we give to others of who and what they could become has power when it echoes what the spirit has already spoken into their souls.”
Eugene Peterson tells a story about Martin Buber having said, "The greatest thing any person can do for another is to confirm the deepest thing in him, in her--to take the time and have the discernment to see what's most deeply there, most fully that person, and then confirm it by recognizing and encouraging it."
Peterson stresses the importance of looking beyond surface appearances. "We have dealings with hundreds of people who take one look at us, make a snap judgement, and then slot us into a category so that they won't have to deal with us as persons. They treat us something less than we are; and if we're in constant association with them, we become less."