Ashley and Anthony Garren
1 Samuel 1:19-28
19Early the next morning they arose and worshiped before the Lord and then went back to their home at Ramah. Elkanah made love to his wife Hannah, and the Lord remembered her. 20So in the course of time Hannah became pregnant and gave birth to a son. She named him Samuel, saying, “Because I asked the Lord for him.”
21When her husband Elkanah went up with all his family to offer the annual sacrifice to the Lord and to fulfill his vow, 22Hannah did not go. She said to her husband, “After the boy is weaned, I will take him and present him before the Lord, and he will live there always.”
23“Do what seems best to you,” her husband Elkanah told her. “Stay here until you have weaned him; only may the Lord makegood his word.” So, the woman stayed at home and nursed her son until she had weaned him.
24After he was weaned, she took the boy with her, young as he was, along with a three-year-old bull, an ephah of flour and a skin of wine, and brought him to the house of the Lord at Shiloh. 25When the bull had been sacrificed, they brought the boy to Eli, 26and she said to him, “Pardon me, my lord. As surely as you live, I am the woman who stood here beside you praying to the Lord. 27I prayed for this child, and the Lord has granted me what I asked of him. 28So now I give him to the Lord. For his whole life he will be given over to the Lord.” And he worshiped the Lord there.
Our scripture tells about the special blessing of Samuel as well as the meaning of his name. His mother, Hannah asked for the Lord to bless her son and gave him a special name, Samuel, “Because I asked the Lord for him.”
Do you know the origin and meaning of your name?
When both of our children were born, we had a pastor come to the hospital, surround the family giving a “prayer of blessing” over the new baby. It was a prayer that said welcome to the world child, know that you will be blessed and coveted by God and your family. It was special to us that this happened in the hospital with our family soon after the child was born.
Our first child, Grace age 16, was a surprise! We had only been married a year and were not trying, but surprise – these things happen! God had a plan for us; we embraced it and were blessed beyond measure. It was easy to figure out what to name her. I have always been clumsy and had always implied that when I had a child, her name would be Grace. The dictionary definition of the word grace is “the simple elegance or refinement of movement.” Our Grace is defiantly “graceful” in the water as a year-round competitive swimmer/diver. The United Methodist beliefs understand grace as “a gift from God” and that Sanctifying Grace “enables us to grow into the image of Christ and leads to inward and outward holiness.” This is what I pray for my Grace, who is a gift from God, that she grows into the image of Christ and that her light shines bright in all that she does!
Our second child Grant, age 9, was also a surprise! Just about a year prior to Grant’s birth, we had been told by doctors that I could not have any more children. That was ok with us. We understood, after all I am an only child. Little did we know that God had a special plan for us. I became pregnant a few months later! When we were deciding on names our standards were; the name should begin with a G and be an uncommon name. Then it hit us. Grant. God “granted” us a blessing in this child! His name would be Grant. And he is a blessing, including his cute dimples and constant talking. Grant has a very compassionate heart that continues to grow in all that he does. May God continue to grant him the love of Christ and compassion for others!
What is your name story?!