Sunday, April 12, 2009

Learning Life with a New Name

Have you ever been so set on something that you were willing to fight for it? Have you ever gotten to the point that you knew you were so right that you risked a relationship over it? Have you ever learned the hard way that your way was not exactly the right way?

I have. In fact, I learned it just this week. It has taken me four weeks to understand what the Lord has been trying to teach me, and then it dawned on me... The fact was, I was wrong. In learning this life lesson, I had to let go of something I thought was life or death. I risked the sanity in my home over what-only-now-I-see as a tiny detail. I was willing to choose my way over letting the Lord have His.

It is a battle I probably will never live down. It is one I will never forget as I look into the eyes of my soon-to-arrive little boy. It is one my husband will have to always remember as the issue I finally let go and let God. It is one you probably will never understand. It is one I cannot fully explain because it was solely of the Lord.

You see, a little over two years ago, my soon-to-be husband and I sat down in a pair of rocking chairs and planned our lives together. We knew it was what the Lord wanted, so we wasted no time in deciding where to live, what our future would be like, and even how we would name our children. We had it all figured out, except the part about the "we." "We" then did not fully include the Lord. "We" had made our own plans without asking HIM first.

Fast forward to about thirty-eight weeks ago, Brian and I learned we were pregnant. We talked about that evening in the rocking chairs and were excited because we knew what this child's name would be whether it was a boy or a girl. See, there is that "we" word again. We quickly discovered we would be having a boy, and Elijah Thomas was the name we had planned on. We loved Elijah and couldn't wait to share him and HIS NAME with everyone, and "we" didn't. Everyone, even now in this moment, knows our child as "Elijah," all except for one person...

Then, that one person made it very clear to my husband four weeks ago that this child his wife was carrying was NOT "Elijah." He was to be named a specific name that the Lord would give him. God burdened Brian for four weeks, and thus, I fought him over it for twenty-eight days or more. I could not comprehend why my child's name had to be changed and why the Lord wouldn't explain it to me. Oh, but you know, He did.

My husband and I struggled over the decision to change this baby's name. Something so small had become so big in our home, in our marriage, in our relationships with our Lord, and it hurt. We both cried over "Elijah," though it was just a name, it was the name "we" had chosen for him. I grieved. Literally, I ruined two pairs of contacts, wasted a whole box of tissues, and scared my mother half to death. I pushed my husband away, became angry with the Lord, and had no intention of doing what both Brian and God were asking us to do.

Learning to give in, let go, and understand God's purpose are much more important than anything you will ever do. I had to realize what the truth was in this situation the Lord was creating for me, and it was this simple message: he is MY child, as are you. The Lord helped me to understand that the baby's name doesn't matter, nor does his eye color or his sleeping patterns or what clothes he will be wearing. What matters is that the Lord has entrusted me with him, and the Lord is still in complete control.

When I learned life this way, I realized that God had every right to name this child. He created him. He knit him in my womb. He knows more about him than I ever will. He loves him more than I ever can. He has this child in the palm of His Hand, and I am honored that God has chosen this lesson for me.

So, the next time you get so set on something that you are willing to bring out your harsh words and clenched fists... The next time you think you are so right that you are willing to let go of a friend... The next time you are in the middle of learning life the hard way... Just remember that God knows what is best. He completely has your best interests in mind. Be willing to let go and let Him have His way... Besides, the worst thing that could happen, if you are like me, is Him choosing your child and giving him a BRAND, NEW NAME.

We'll share it with you when he arrives...

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