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The name game . . .

23 Nov

I’ve had opportunities recently to share the story of how we chose Sammy’s name, and as I read through my blog, it doesn’t appear that I’ve shared the story here.

Did you know that Sammy was supposed to be a “Seth”?  Early in my pregnancy as we discussed names for our baby, I wanted a name from the Bible.  As I contemplated it, I was fond of Seth.  Seth was the third child of Adam and Eve.  After Cain had killed Abel, Seth was born, and according to the genealogy of Jesus found in the Gospel of Luke, it was through Seth’s lineage that Jesus was born.

Being a planner by nature, I wanted to know our baby’s gender when the time came for the big reveal at the 20 week ultrasound.  Steve and I decided that we would share the baby’s gender, but we would keep the baby’s name a secret until its birth.  Following the ultrasound confirming we were having a boy, we settled on Seth.

Due to irregularities seen during that ultrasound, it was recommended that I return for a follow-up ultrasound four weeks later.  It was during this second round of ultrasounds when I learned that our Seth had Holoprosencephaly.  We were told to expect profound mental retardation and “facial deformities” as the ultrasound indicated his nose was small, his eyes were closely-set and his eye orbits were protruding.

As I sought comfort and understanding through God’s word, I was reminded of a verse I had studied a few weeks prior.  It was 1 Samuel 16:7… Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.  It was in that moment when I knew his name was to be “Samuel”.

Samuel

“Come, follow Me…”

16 Feb

I was recently scanning my laptop looking for old photos, and I came across a few items I had written many years ago.  I thought I’d share something I wrote in 2003 for a young man Steve and I were mentoring at the time.  Looking at the date of when it was written, I estimate that I was around 28 weeks pregnant which means that we had been made aware of Sammy’s HPE for about a month.

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When I was younger, I thought everything was boring, especially if it had anything to do with church or religion.  It has taken me a long time to finally figure it out, but I’ve learned over the years that Jesus is FAR from boring.

After He began His ministry, one of the first things Jesus did was to extend an invitation of a lifetime to four ordinary fishermen (Peter, Andrew, James, and John).  “Come, follow Me,” Jesus said, “and I will make you fishers of men.”  They left behind all they had known and embarked on an amazing adventure with Christ.

Close your eyes and imagine Christ whispering to you, “Hey, follow me, and I will make you . . . ”  Think about what He will make you and what you’d like to be.  Psalm 37:4 says, “Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.”  What does your heart desire?

Jesus’ disciples weren’t just His students, they were His friends, and He loved them deeply.   They went everywhere with Him, and they did so many things together.  They ate together, traveled together, and talked together.  Jesus even gave some of them nicknames just like we do with our closest friends.  He called Peter the “Rock”, and He referred to James and John as “Sons of Thunder.”  They walked everywhere they went, so think about the times when you’ve walked somewhere with your best friends and how you all have laughed and joked with each other.  Don’t you imagine that they shared a few “high fives” after someone had been healed?

After Jesus was crucified and left them, don’t you imagine that each of the disciples must have played back a video in their minds of every moment that they had spent with Jesus?  Peter had walked on water.  They each took a piece of the five loaves and the two fish and wondered how in the world they were going to feed a multitude of people, only to find that there was plenty leftover after everyone was full.  What about the time when they ran out of wine at the wedding, and Jesus turned the water into wine?  How about the blind man who could now see and the crippled man who could now dance and leap for joy?  Each of the disciples was given the power to perform miracles and heal people.  Remember that these were ordinary men who were given an extraordinary power and an extraordinary responsibility.

Life as a disciple wasn’t always easy for them, and it won’t always be easy for us.  There will be risks and challenges that we never anticipated, and there will be times when we will question our abilities.  Sometimes, it seems easier just to stay in the boat and continue our safe, ordinary way, but Jesus wants us to step out of the boat and take a leap of faith with Him.  Are you ready to begin the adventure of a lifetime?  Can you hear Him calling to you, “Come, follow Me . . .”?

The adventure awaits you!