Day 2 of 31 Days of UNimpressive writing: only from the heart: Our Given Names

Children, courage, Faith, family, Motherhood, Prayer, Teaching, Trust, Vulnerability


There’s a story about my mama’s name, mine too.  She, Bette Jean, was supposed to have been called Elizabeth.

Mama wanted to call me Libby. Daddy said “No, that’s a can of peaches.”  My grandma, “Bama” agreed to my name being Lisa; but, insisted on the Anne that follows.

Who’s to say whether we, over time, become our names or they were just right for us all along. My mama surely was not Elizabeth-like.

Couldn’t see her as a Liz or a Beth; Bette, for sure.

And me? Libby is cute, perky, and pretty. Not me. Lisa Anne is who I am, who I have become.

Heather could have been Olivia and Austin was almost Zachary.

Teaching love

Heather Analise, a child of God

Heather, open to life and at peace near open fields and cows. Her name fits. Analise added as a middle, pretty and classic.

Austin, James Austin, again just right. James a solid and reputable name, Austin, a  nod to the dry humor and surprisingly big heart of his great-grandfather.

James Austin.a child of God

James Austin.a child of God

My children’s names, the names they have become.

I am thinking of the unthinkable today. One in college, the other a teacher leading a classroom of the youngest students.

I am trying, but struggling to place myself in the minds of the parents of students killed in Oregon.

I am wondering how, in the aftermath of terror and shock, I would feel to know that when asked, my children said they were Christians, told to stand and then shot.

I visualize not so clearly and can sort of imagine the scene.

Young adults, students, surprised by the intrusive presence of a peer with a gun, afraid; but,  deciding to go with his demands, to not cause anger, to remain quiet, not draw attention to self.

To cower. To be compliant. I imagine this might have been their thinking in effort to survive.

Until, the question

“Are you a Christian?”

My children are Christians.

I witnessed the salvation of both and I’ve seen them acknowledge in ways big, small, private and outspoken, their faith.

They know Jesus.  Jesus knows them.

People know that they know Jesus.

Children of God. A name that can’t be denied.

I am praying for the Oregon mamas and daddies, parents of children of God.

Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become  Children of God. John 1:12

Thank you, Lord, for my name and for the names of my children.

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