Monday, May 20, 2013

Three Boy Names

A few days ago, I posted a baby update. My sons were urging me to finish writing so I could read to them, so I neglected to finish the story.

We have loved choosing our boys' names. My mother's maiden name is dying out in her generation (no male offspring to carry on), and I had decided back in college that my first son's middle name would be her maiden name, carrying on the name one more generation. My grandpa was a master craftsman, doing amazing things with wood. He reminded me of the verse that says, "Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business and to work with your hands."

We didn't find it easy to think of a first name to fit with "Lykosh." I happen to love the name Pierre, but that doesn't work. Phil didn't want any juniors named after him. So when we were waiting for the ultrasound, there was a book in the waiting room of baby names. We read through some A's before deciding that the /j/ sound was better. "Jadon" comes pretty early in the J's, happily. Phil was driving through the mountains later that day and said to himself, "His name is Jadon."

At the time, I thought that meant "God has heard," and I would like a man of prayer. And Jadon is mentioned in a list in Nehemiah, as one of those who rebuilt the wall of Jerusalem.

Last week I found perhaps a more accurate website that deals with Bible names. That translated "Jadon" as "He judges." And that might be more accurate for Jadon at this stage in life: he loves and longs for justice and righteousness.

Jadon worked well, too, because both Phil and I have J as a middle initial. So Jadon got a J initial, too.

With Isaiah, his whole name means Yahweh is salvation; He is exalted (or Let God be praised, depending on translation). As an English major, I really love the language and imagery in Isaiah; it's a powerful, beautiful book, with so many prophecies of the coming King. And Phil has always loved the book of Jude (such an ending: "Now to him who is able to keep you from falling, and to present you before his glorious presence, without fault and with great joy: to the only God our Savior be glory and majesty and power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord").

Abraham came shortly after we had listened to a lecturer speak about the broken family of Abraham, how the Christians have Isaac and the Muslims have Ishmael, and how God longs to restore that broken family.

And Abraham was called God's friend. I can think of little better than that.

We thought Abraham meant "Father of Nations," and his middle name, Josiah, meant "God has healed." So to have a son who would work with God to heal the nations ... we liked it.

Not to mention that Josiah is mentioned as a king who followed God with his whole heart, in a way that no king, before or after, did.

The recent website has a different translation of "Abraham." I am no Hebrew expert, but they make the argument that Abraham's name, given after the covenant with God, has embedded in the meaning "to cut a covenant," and the meaning of "they will fly." Which seems strange, except God is pictured as having wings, and the idea that we can follow God because of the covenant (and, combined with the middle name, have God's healing): I like that meaning, too.

After Abraham's birth, a friend pointed out that Abraham was known to follow God as an old man, and Josiah is known to follow God as a young man, so we had the spectrum covered.

Phew! Just writing all that has wiped me out. (After several pretty good days, today was a much less good day.) More on this subject to come....

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