Friday, September 17, 2010

A Name, A Legacy -- Naming Micah Paul

*This is the fourth installment in a series of posts on choosing meaningful names for our little blessings. You can read the first three posts here:
A Name, A Legacy
A Name, A Legacy -- Naming Asher Joseph
A Name, A Legacy -- Naming Acacia Lily

Micah Paul, about 4 months old

Naming a third child presents a unique set of challenges. For most of us, it is fairly easy to choose a name for baby #2 that "sounds right" next to child #1's name. Add a third child in to the mix, however, and the task becomes trickier. On the one hand, you don't want him to feel like the "odd man out". On the other hand, choosing a name that is too similar or thematic might been seen as overly-cute or just plain corny.

Harmonious, yet distinctive, is the goal. And it's a lofty one.

When it came time for us to choose a name for our third child, my initial favorite name for a baby boy was yet another "A" name. I campaigned hard, but Chris insisted,

"Two 'A' names is a coincidence. Three is a pattern." And he's probably right.

Back to the drawing board...or the index card, as the case may be.

You see, my husband knows that I'm a baby name fanatic, and have been since childhood. So, he allows me the fun of researching names, and then asks me to come up with an index card of favorites from which he can choose a "winner".

Sounds good--on paper, at least. It broke down, however, when I handed him an index card of my top 5 boys names, only to have him declare that he didn't like any of them enough to give them to our son. And girls names? I didn't even have a list!

I will admit, perhaps to my own embarrassment, that somewhere around second trimester, I started to panic. We had Asher's name virtually set in stone by the time I was eight weeks pregnant. Acacia's name was decided before she was even conceived, having been the name Asher would have received had he been a girl. This whole scenario was starting to freak me out. How could I be this far along in my pregnancy and not have names yet?!

After having spent a long summer morning on the back porch (in the middle of third trimester) with the little ones and yet another baby name book from the library, I finally had one girl name that I was truly happy with. I wrote it on a note card, with an explanation of it's meaning, and the words, "Pretty Please with sugar on top?", and placed it on Chris's dresser. I awoke the next morning to find the note card on top of my dresser, with the words, "Yes", and "You're welcome", and "I love you" written on the bottom.

So that was decided. state the obvious...we had a boy.

So, how did we come up with Micah Paul?

If you're sharp, you may be asking yourself whatever happened to the boy's name from my second pregnancy--you know, the name Acacia would have been given had she been a boy? It has to exist, or I wouldn't have been able to sleep at night, right? Right.

Remember that note card full of boys names? It was on there. Along with the rest, it was declared unusable by my dear, yet sometimes fickle, husband.

Then, one afternoon, just a few weeks away from my due date, Chris was reading aloud a list of "nature names" (from still another baby name book). Names like Aspen, Bay, and Birch. When he got to the "M's", he paused.

Chris: "Mica. Why not Mica?" (it is a mineral, you know...)

I just about hit the floor.

Me: "Micah--with an H, like the prophet--was the name we picked for Acacia had she been a boy!"

Chris: "Really?"

Me: "Yes! Micah Paul. 'Micah', meaning 'who is like God?', and 'Paul' after your grandfather."

Chris: "Then why have we been spending so much  time looking for a boy's name?"

Me: "Because you told me you didn't like it anymore."

Chris: "I did? I don't know why I would have said that. I'm sorry."

And so, it was decided. Now I could have a baby.

Acacia Kissing Baby Micah, Hours Old

Not long after Micah's birth, I knew we had made the right choice. "Micah" suited him better than any of the other names that had been on "the list". And Paul? Well, Grandpa Mueller was tickled pink. Somehow, with 11 children, a plethora of grandchildren, and Micah himself being great-grandchild #11, non of his progeny had yet received his namesake. We were happily surprised.

In hindsight, we realized a couple of special things about Micah's name that, again, could have only been planned by God. For one thing, we learned that we were pregnant at Christmas-time, and Micah was the prophet who announced that the Messiah would be born in Bethlehem.

"But you, O Bethlehem Ephrathah, who are too little to be among the clans of Judah, from you shall come forth for me one who is to be ruler in Israel, whose coming forth is from old, from ancient days."
Micah 5:2

Also, I noticed that the meaning of his two names, when put together, make a statement of humility.

"Micah" asks a question: Who is Like God?
"Paul", meaning little, and being the name given to Saul after his dramatic conversion on the road to Damascus, seems to answer: Not me.

Today, Micah is an energetic, exhausting, but very fun 2-year-old. He has an endearing smile, his daddy's love of the outdoors, and the ability to eat an entire bunch of bananas in one day given the opportunity. He has a great sense of humor--although, I'm pretty sure that he still thinks that the "baby in mommy's belly" is my idea of a joke!

And he loves to say his name, with gusto, "Mmmmmm...icah!"

Happy Birthday, Micah!

"With what shall I come before the LORD and bow myself before God on high?
Shall I come before Him with burnt offerings? Shall I come before Him with yearling calves?
Will the LORD be pleased with thousands of rams? With ten thousand rivers of oil?

Shall I give my firstborn for my transgressions? The fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?

He has shown you, oh man, what is good;
and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice,
and to love kindness,
and to walk humbly with your God?"

Micah 6:6-8

These words moved me deeply when I sang them as a college choir girl, but they mean so much more to me now that I am a mother.

The fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? 

Thank-you, Father, for giving your One and Only Son, as the perfect sacrifice for my transgressions. Without His sacrifice, neither I, nor my children, would be able to do justice, love kindness, or walk humbly with You.

Thank-you for your grace, mercy, and compassionate forgiveness. Thank-you for your blessings.

In the name of Jesus I humbly pray, Amen.


Melissa said...

What a precious little one...and lovely story!

Anonymous said...

beautiful! I love your writing - totally inspires me, as I'm finally giving it a try too!

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I'm a Stay-at-Home, Christian, "crunchy" mama. I have been blessed with the calling to be a godly wife and mother. I am passionate about bringing up my children in the discipline and instruction of the LORD, through home education and discipleship. Helpmeet to my best friend and soulmate, Christopher since 1/29/2000, and mama to four little blessings, including a tiny, precious, newborn baby girl.

My Writing Elsewhere...

Fixing Your Heart on Titus 2

Did you pray for your
husband today?
Monday--His Work
Tuesday--His Integrity
Wednesday--His Mind
Thursday--His Purpose
Friday--His Health
Saturday--His Protection
Sunday--His Faith

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Features God Made, Home Grown

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2009 Nominee!

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My Wired Style

My Wired Style
Success is not learned. It is discovered and nurtured. What was your child born to do?

Our Curriculum 2010-2011

Bible--Child's Story Bible by Catherine Vos, Apologia Biblical World View Book 1, "Who is God and Can I Really Know Him?"
Catechism-- "Training Hearts, Teaching Minds" by Starr Meade
Phonics--Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons
(Kindergarten), Year 1 Booklist (1st Grade)
Handwriting--Bible Copywork, made using Educational Fontware
Spelling-- All About Spelling Level 1 (1st grade)
Math--Math-U-See Primer (Kindergarten) , Math-U-See Alpha (1st grade)
World History--Simply Charlotte Mason's Genesis Through Deuteronomy and Ancient Egypt
American History--The Light and The Glory For Children Series
Art--Interest-led projects and handicrafts
Geography and Missions-- "Hero Tales" by Dave and Neta Jackson, as well as various other missionary biographies, incorporating globe and map study
*We will be studying music and phy-ed., participating in a writing club and nature club, as well as attending various field trips, with our church's homeschool group.*

Disciple Like Jesus

Disciple Like Jesus

Raising Homemakers

Raising Homemakers

Quiverfull Family

The Modest Mom


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