A Name for 2014

I love this little boy so much already.  I think its partly because I know my time with him is short so I spend time thinking about him, praying for him and loving him even more so than I usually do during pregnancy.  Another woman who carried a Potter’s Syndrome baby called it “Packing a lifetime of love into a small amount of time.”  I think that is a perfect way to articulate it.  This is what I was afraid of.  Ever since finding out about his diagnosis this fear welled up in me, “What if I love him too much to lose him?”  I have since realized there is no way getting around the fact that losing him will be the hardest thing I have ever had to do.  But gradually (very gradually) my fear of loving him has shifted into an appreciation for him. Everything about him.

Gideon Profile
Our Little Man at 18 weeks. His precious profile melts my heart.

His name, in particular, is so special to me.  Even the utterance of it sends chills down my spine and I know that God was an integral part of us choosing his name (which we did long before we even found out it was a boy).  Rewinding back to our happy months of whimsically talking baby names, Dave one day brought up the name “Gideon.”  I have always had a thing for Gideon’s story in the Bible.  I always understood him and would often use his “fleece throwing” method for my own.  In the book of Judges it goes something like this (my own rendition of course):

God: “Gideon!  Its me God.  Come on, I need you to do something for me! Don’t worry. You will have nothing to fear because I will be with you.”

Gideon: “Um okkkayyy.  Well you say its you God, but how can I REALLY be sure.  I mean what you are asking me to do is is pretty risky.”

God: “Gideon. Its me.  Did you see that angel I sent?  Who else sends angels??”

Gideon: “Okay okay.  If it is REALLY you then I am going to throw a fleece out into my backyard and go to bed.  If its you then make all the ground around the fleece wet, but the fleece totally dry.  Then I’ll know its you.”

God: “Oh my goodness Gideon, fine.  Here you go.  Now see?  I told you its me!”

Gideon: “Wow it worked!  Fleece = dry and Ground = sopping wet.  Sweet.  BUT just to make sure, this time make the fleece totally sopping wet and the ground bone dry.  Please?  I promise I won’t ask you again.”

God:  “Because I am a loving, compassionate and patient God.  Here my dear Gideon.  Here.”

Gideon: “Wow, okay.  I think I have it now.  I believe you.  Sorry it took me so long.  I am here for you, to do whatever you call me to.”

If you only knew how many fleeces I’ve thrown in my life.  I am not saying its the best thing to do, but I always felt like it was a special thing between God and I.  You know, the same way he understood Gideon.  God never chastened Gideon or made him feel bad, but knew it is what was needed in order to help Gideon through his fear.  God knew that He was about to call Gideon to trust Him in the impossible: to fight an army of tens of thousands with only a small army of 300 men.  Off Gideon went, now fearless, with a small army and a huge God to fight a battle that would save his country.

In so many ways I feel like my little Gideon has cured me of my own fears.  All the things that used to consume my mind and keep me up at night, no longer seem to bother me.  I feel like, if I can live through this what can’t I face?  But even more than that, I realize how small so many of my fears were.  I praise God for my Gideon.  I am so thankful for his ministry to me, its like he is soothing me and making me new again every day.  Yes, the thought of having him and losing him is the worst thing I have ever had to think about.  It brings me to my knees in tears.  But I would pick having this Gideon Matthew over no Gideon Matthew at all.  His influence on me, in God’s name with God’s strength, is the most powerful thing I have ever experienced.

His middle name?  Right from the beginning of choosing boy and girl names we knew his middle name was to be Matthew.  You see when I was around 3 years old my parents were pregnant with their second child.  At around 20 weeks gestation their son, Matthew, went to be with Lord.  Our child was to be named in his honor and remembrance.  How tears rolled at the realization that they would meet long before we ever dreamed they would.

To be honest, at first it was hard for me to celebrate the coming of 2014.  In my weak moments I find myself feeling like I don’t have much to look forward to.  But in the pain and in the hardship God has still created in me this little life and he is real and powerful.  It is an experience I would not wish on anyone, but what Gideon has given us in the midst of his diagnosis, is one that could never be replaced.  Thank you Gideon Matthew, for being a son and a name to the change history of this family.

In all of that, I guess 2014 really is a very special year indeed.  May yours be too, in new ways, better ways that far transcend New Year’s resolutions and goals.  May you too glimpse into a deep level of thankfulness for all that is truly important in each day we have been given.

My gift of thankfulness is the blue fleece blanket that lays next to my bed each night.  I have named it “Gideon’s Fleece” and I will treasure it and snuggle it from now until forever.  One day I will even wrap him in it.

13 thoughts on “A Name for 2014

  1. Maria, you have always been so very special in your Nanas’ eyes and her heart from the day that you were born. Our Father knows how amazing you are with such a strong faith and a strong heart filled with his love. He felt, you, his daughter, are such a specially gifted woman to nurture and carry his angel Gideon Matthew.,.Sweetheart, I pray that our Father will continue to give you and Gideon his strength and courage. I love you so very much..Nana

  2. Maria, I read and read, your bearing story. I feel the strength you have, but sometimes cannot understand. I as you know We lost our Robert my son. I have more faith with our Lord, due to you and your family more than you can imagine.
    I too know my Little Robert is holding Gideon Matthews hand, and watching over him. My Robert has meet so many of his friends of his age, and believe he too was a guardian angel to help his friends, entire the life of Jesus. I pray that our Lord will give you strength as I know you have had but will continue to have. May our Lord Jesus Christ and our angels in Heaven, watch over you, your family and Gideon Matthew. I love you Maria, and you continue to inspire me and others. Love Aunt Barbara

  3. Maria, What an inspiration you are and what a witness for our Lord. I know this road that you are on is a very difficult one, but your faith will get you through it and you will be stronger at the end of this road. I speak from experience, as I too, carried my second child, a baby girl that we named Amy Beth. She was my bicentennial baby born in 1976 and lived less than 48 hours. I still grieve for her, in a sense, as I never got to hold her. She was rushed to a hospital across town shortly after birth and I never saw her alive again or held her. I don’t even have a photograph of her. Please know that I am praying for you and your family. Hugs, Deb

    1. Dear Deb,

      Thank you so much for sharing your story and your heart. Momma’s like you give me hope in life after this season has passed. I am confident that life will never go back to being the same, having been touched so deeply by these children God gave to us. But I know that renewal and strength and comfort are real. Thank you!

  4. Maria, thank you for sharing such precious words of faith during this very personal journey. You are teaching us all more than we can express. We lift you all in prayer daily and pray that God holds you in the palm of His hands.

  5. Maria, I just read your blog and watched your video about your precious little angel. I know GOD was there and your testimony of Faith is so very powerful my prayer is others will also see through your eyes that there is nothing bigger than our God. I also pray others will see what we see as devastating pain GOD will use for good. You are precious in his eyes and your beautiful amazing family. God Bless you and I am praying for you and your family as God has chosen you, such a sensitive vessel to carry HIS message of eternal Love.Blessings.

    1. Kathylee,

      Thank you SO much for your blessing and your prayer today. What precious words lifted up in my honor, you are a sweey sister and I am thankful for you today.

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