You know the age old question what's in a name and there's that whole a rose by any other name thing and yadda yadda yadda. Well this weekend we had to decide what if anything we would want to change P and L's name too. We instantly knew we would not be changing their first name. They are toddlers that are well aware of their names and it is who they are, who they came into this world being and although it is not the name I'm sure I would have given them, it is just one more thing that we don't want them to lose. They will of course take our last name and neither of them know their middle names so we are changing those. I figure it is a good way to merge the past with the present, their old family with their new one.
If you all are like us, naming your child was no easy task. I have a little test I do. It of course has to flow with the first and last name. It has to sound good at infancy on a birth announcement. It has to pass the high school graduation test and it has to pass the professional printed on a business card challenge. If it works for those three timeframes, it passes.
So back in July only about 7 weeks after the kids moved in with us, my friend posted a note on Facebook that was a devotion by Kay Arthur that she just wanted to share. While I read it, I wept. I still do everytime I look at it. The biblical character that it talks about just spoke to me so much of my L. It's about a boy born of unremarkable circumstances that is called to do great things for our Father. And at first he questions how could God love him or his people if they were surrounded by such poverty, danger and pain and the beginnings of L's life have certainly been filled with both. Then he realizes that this is truly God that is taking an interest in him and the young man is filled with peace. He realizes that no matter what circumstances you are in that God is there with you and that even though God continued to put him in hard situations, that he will be there with him at all times. With my L, I do not know what his journey ahead will look like and their have been so many moments since he walked through our door that I've wondered what will happen to this precious child, but the fact that God loves him even more than I and that I know He will not leave him has brought me peace like no other. So for that reason, L's middle name will be Gideon. It doesn't really pass my test. It doesn't flow but it does tell a story of special young man that I know can do great things for God no matter his circumstances. It fits him perfectly.
Here is a portion of the devotion my friend posted:
Finding Peace in Times of Distress
Precepts for Life
When the hour is dark, when the situation is desperate, when we are humbled and brought very low, we finally begin looking and longing for God’s peace. Trembling, we grope through the darkness, longing to know that all will be well. When the angel of Jehovah appeared to Gideon (Judges 6), he was crouching in the dark confines of a winepress, threshing wheat in secret to protect it — and himself — from the Midianite invaders. This was not a new way to thresh grain, it was cowardice.
Listen to how the angel of the Lord addresses Gideon. The angel of the LORD appeared to him and said to him, “The LORD is with you, O valiant warrior.” Then Gideon said to him, “O my lord, if the LORD is with us, why then has all this happened to us? …the LORD has abandoned us and given us into the hand of Midian.” The LORD looked at him and said, “Go in this your strength and deliver Israel from the hand of Midian. Have I not sent you?” (Judges 6:12-14)
At first Gideon questioned this angel of the Lord and complained about his circumstances. How could God really love Israel? How could God really care about Gideon when they were all in such distress, danger, and poverty? Gideon did not yet know to Whom he was speaking. This angel spoke as Jehovah Himself, and when Gideon finally realized he’d been discussing politics and religion with God — face to face — he was rightfully terrified:“Alas, O Lord GOD! For now I have seen the angel of the LORD face to face.” The LORD said to him, “Peace to you, do not fear; you shall not die.” Then Gideon built an altar there to the LORD and named it The LORD is Peace. (Judges 6:22-24)
When do we first encounter the name Jehovah-shalom? Where does God first reveal His name as The Lord is Peace? In the presence of a man who is desperately afraid… a man who is literally walled in by circumstances… a man who is worried and discouraged and has no peace in his heart.
When Gideon’s eyes were at last opened to see that the Lord had taken a personal interest in his situation, that God was present with him in the midst of all this darkness and fear, he worshiped the Lord by a new name — Jehovah-shalom, The Lord is Peace. In the days to come, the Lord was going to put Gideon in some very unpeaceful situations. In some ways Gideon would face more stresses and challenges than he had ever faced in his young life. Learning this business of being a “valiant warrior” wasn’t going to be easy. But no matter what happened from this point on, Gideon could look back to an altar. He could look back at a moment in time when Jehovah-shalom said to him, “Peace to you, do not fear.”
And as for P, well, her's was easy. She has not stopped smiling since she walked in the door and Trevor's sister's name is Joy so.....Joy it will be. It passes the test on all accounts.