Whether He lights you on fire for a certain name, moves you to choose something you didn’t think of before, inspires you with figures from the bible or gives you an answer through praying or dreaming, the experience of praying about a baby name is unique for each of us.
And all the while other pressures, expectations and desires compete for our attention.
Trends that judge popular and unpopular names abound. One tabloid praises unique baby names while another calls them bizarre.
The pope says to choose baby names from the bible as “an unmistakable sign that the Holy Spirit will allow the person to blossom in the bosom of the Church.”
And who can forget when the 2005 book Freakonomics predicted top baby names for 2015 and those that would likely lead to career success? Now just three years from the end date, many of those names missed the mark.
Does the name make the person, or does the person make the name? Either way, God makes the person and the name.
“The earth is the LORD’s and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it.” (Psalm 24:1)
Praying for he Right Baby Name
With all the clamoring voices, where do you look? How do you know what name will “fit” the child? What if it sounds silly when the baby gets older? What if a biblical name wasn’t in your top 10? (Hint: Baby names from the bible still make the “most popular lists” year after year.)
There is one place to turn that will yield the right answer.
God knows our children before we do, and He loves them more than us. When we pray about picking a baby name, we’ll get the Creator’s guidance.
“I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb.” — Jeremiah 1:5a
“You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb.” — Psalm 139:13
Trends come and go. Studies come and go. God stays the same through the ages.
He hears our prayers and requests in line with His will (1 John 5:14), so of course He will guide us toward a name that best fits His beloved babies. This peace from the Lord lets us overcome stress and worry.
“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” — James 1:17
Baby Name Testimony
We didn’t set out to choose biblical baby names for our kids, necessarily, but we did stay open to what God had in store for us. The result? We ended up with two biblical baby names
The first time I was pregnant, I did what everyone else does — googled “popular baby names,” “biblical baby names” and “baby name meanings.” Paged through a few books. Checked top 10 lists, top 100 lists.
My husband had some ideas, but I didn’t like them. I had some thoughts, but he said no way.
It was hard to imagine a name without even knowing what we were having… and without knowing the baby. We prayed that God would show us the name.
One night around month three, I had a dream. God was speaking to me and said, “You’re having a boy and His name is being spelled in the sand.” One letter at a time spelled out: ABEL.
I started to say the name. There was a story from the bible about Cain and Abel, but wait, which one was Abel? I had to turn back around to ask God if I had the name right, feeling uncertain, but the dream was done.
I woke up David to tell him about it.
Half awake, he goes, “Are you sure it was God?”
I started to think, “Did that just happen? What if I don’t have a boy. What if…”
I got out of bed, anxious, even nervous, and prayed, “God, please let me know what you want.” I heard immediately, “You will see the name tomorrow.” I told David that we would see the name, felt a little weird and went back to sleep.
The next day we didn’t really talk about it, but I looked for the name. I looked at a waiter’s name tag, at license plates, at signs we passed. Nothing.
Then I just let it go.
Sure enough, as we were walking in our neighborhood and stopping to look at films playing at the foreign cinema, we saw it, right there on one of the signs.
We felt confirmed, and I told some people about the name and the dream (yes, they thought I was crazy). A few months later at the ultrasound we found out he was a boy. We praised God!
With baby number two, we immediately prayed that God would give us a name. There were no dreams or movie signs, but there was much prayer … and then a long period of silence.
Finally, my husband came to me and said he heard the name Aaron.
I loved it, prayed about it, and felt God confirming the name.
Neither of these names were really on my mind originally, but I can’t imagine my kids with any other names.
God is good, and all that comes from Him is good.
Prayer for Healthy Marriage: 34 Ways to Pray for Your Marriage When Stressed, Sleep Deprived, Frustrated and Fed Up
Calvary Monterrey 2012 series on figures from the bible and how they demonstrated faith: Online Video Sermons About Biblical Names