What’s in a name?

As a little girl, I looked forward to the day I would get married and have a family of my own.  I cannot say I ever had any ambition other than being a housewife and mother.  Other girls wanted to be doctors, lawyers, actresses, singers or successful business women, but I just wanted to stay home and have babies.

This may seem silly to some, but I kept a book of potential names for the children I would have.  Any name I liked, I would write down.  I would also write potential middle names to go with the first name.  I always liked to know the meaning of names as well. I found it fascinating and still do.  My name means princess.

Because I had parents who gave great consideration to what my sisters and I were named I wanted to name my own children with great care.  I didn’t want to give my children names that had a bad connotation like Delilah or Cain.  I also wanted their names to mean something.

There is an old Hebrew folk saying from the Bible: kishmo ken hu–“Like his name, so is he” (1 Samuel 25:25).  I believe that a person’s name can indicate the kind of person they will become or the character they will have.

Brad and I had names picked out before we ever even conceived Isaac.  We finally decided to try to conceive our first child when we’d been married for a little over two years.  It took us nine months to finally get pregnant, and when I took that test, I was so shocked and surprised at seeing the second line, I laughed.  I laughed for about five minutes straight!  And I knew immediately in my heart that I was having a boy and that I wanted to name him Isaac because of its meaning–He laughes or laughter.  I believe God gave me the gift of knowing I was going to have a boy and the name to go with it, and it was confirmed when Brad came home from a day snowboarding and agreed that “Isaac” was a good name.  We later decided to give him the middle name Roger, naming him after my father.  At the time it was a way to honor my father since he never had a son of his own, but I hope that Isaac will one day be just like his namesake–a strong Christian man who walks with integrity.

And then came our second pregnancy–I knew even before I took the test that we had another baby on the way.  I also felt in my heart that our next baby would be a girl. I took the pregnancy test, saw the second line and knew immediately that I wanted to name our second child Naomi which means beautiful, gentle, and pleasant.  When I shared the name with Brad, he again liked the name.  We decided to give her the middle name of Sterling.  Sterling is my middle name as well as my mother’s and grandfather’s, and we are all second born children.  I had decided a long time ago that I wanted to give our second child that name because I wanted to continue the tradition.  I hope one day she will be like her grandmother–a woman of faith who prays for others and gives godly counsel.

Names are important, so choose wisely!


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