“Hey, Mom, I have to write a paper about my name so I am wondering why you chose Isaac.” Such a simple question, but the answer included a story which I think surprised him.
This assignment came a few weeks after our pastor talked about the name Isaac in one of his sermons. In the Bible when the angel told Sarah she would have a son in a year, she laughed. When the baby was born, they named him Isaac, which literally means laughter. Our pastor mentioned that when Sarah and Abraham called to their son, they were saying, “Time to eat, Laughter.” Whenever they called their son, they were reminded of how they laughed and how God answered His promise, bringing laughter into their lives.
Did Isaac wonder why his name kept coming up in January? I don’t know about him, but it got me thinking!
Before our second son was born, my husband met a little boy on the golf course named Isaac. He came home in love with the name and tried to talk me into naming our second born Isaac, but I was set on Tyler. Turns out Tyler means builder, and that is what our second son is—a builder.
Within 15 months of Tyler’s birth, I committed my life to Jesus. This caused changes in my thinking and my life. I had a job that I enjoyed as assistant editor of a local weekly newspaper with plans of becoming editor when the current editor and owner retired. It lined up with my dreams so the future looked exciting. When my two sons were in school, I would be able to concentrate more on my career. The problem was that my family was also very important to me, and I wanted to make the right decision in God’s eyes. My boys were growing up, and there was this feeling I had that I couldn’t shake that my family wasn’t done. I would get all tied up in knots about this internal fight over career dream verses family dream. Since girlhood there were really only two things I ever wanted in life: to be wife and mother and to be a writer. I kept covering stories about different Christian families in the neighborhood, and one particular story was about homeschooling. Seeds were planted. Seeds that started to grow and gave me no peace about the present route. Honestly, I couldn’t do it all, have it all. I had to make a choice.
So I took a step of faith and prayed earnestly over the problem. Like Gideon, I asked God for a sign so that I would know without question. “God, what do you want me to do with my life? Do you want me to make a difference with my career and continue on with the plans I have, or do you want me to spend more time at home with my family? Which is it? Make it clear, Lord.”
Could He write the answer on the wall? I didn’t want to make the wrong decision. I get consumed that way sometimes.
Time went on. Sometimes I thought about it. Mostly I worked and took care of my family, doing my best. Then one day, I had this strange thought that I was pregnant, but I wasn’t late, and we weren’t trying. In fact when I told my husband that I wanted to do a pregnancy test, he was surprised, and when I told him I was pregnant, he was shocked. A visit to my doctor later confirmed it. I had my answer loud and clear.
With Isaac, the Lord answered my prayer for direction, and my husband got a son named Isaac, of whom when we learned we were expecting him, we laughed. I still ask God for direction and signs like should I choose A or B, or do you have something else that I haven’t considered, C? The answers aren’t usually so direct.
As it turns out because I quit my job to raise my family when Isaac was born, I began homeschooling. We ended up having five children, two of whom I am still educating. Life doesn’t always go as we plan it. God has bigger and better plans. Oh, I still have my dreams of being a writer, but He has answered my most important dream which is having my family.
And once in a while, I am reminded of the laughter He has bestowed upon me and how He changed my plans with the answer of Isaac.
Do you have an Isaac story?