Thursday, September 26, 2013


this is a repost of something i wrote a couple of years ago.  i'm currently doing a book study with some ladies.  tonight we talked about daniel and the significance of his name change which then came to be about the names that we are given and names that we call ourselves.  the names God gives us can never be taken away and sometimes we just need that reminder; that little whisper; "you are my child."

it isn't ironic. it's not even coincidental or fate or by chance. in the old testament, names were given based on personalities or characteristics of the individual. in many cases, God actually renamed people to fit who He had intended for them to be instead of the person the world defined them as. jacob became israel because he wrestled with God; abram, abraham as he would one day be the father of many. God told the newly renamed abraham to name his son isaac because he was about to bring much laughter to the older, barren couple. later God renames saul to be paul.

my name is amanda, and god named me. my parents had been expecting a boy. they were so caught off guard by my femaleness that their lack of choosing a name caused a delay in my release from the hospital. out of desperation my parents agreed to pray as they parted ways one day. they reunited at the end of the day, each carrying a slip of paper. i like to imagine my dad walking down the hospital hallways with sweaty palms and a nervous heart, wondering if what he carried in his hand would match anything my mom had heard from God. when at last their papers exchanged hands, i picture shock and awe and gratefulness as they read "amanda" written by the hands of their beloved. just like God told abraham to name his son isaac, He told ron and denise to name their daughter amanda.

now, as a twenty-nine-year-old woman, i am finally understanding the depth of just why God chose that name for me. i have spent most of my life feeling broken down, tired, sometimes ugly, and often unloved (although many people have loved me very well). God knew that this would be a lifelong battle for me; that there would be days of extreme loneliness even in the midst of people; that i would be my worst enemy in finding a fulfilling kind of love; that even when i felt loved, i would be uncomfortable. He knew that there would be a need for a daily reminder, a sort of stamp on my soul. God gave me something i could never get rid of, even in spite of myself. He branded me with a meaning, a characteristic that the world could never reshape no matter the circumstances. God named me amanda, "worthy of love". in that, there is no irony.

Thursday, January 03, 2013

New Year

I gave one of my most favorite gifts this Christmas.  I spent a lot of time planning and scheming, getting advice from others, gluing, coloring, writing, and driving around to gather stuff.  But it was so fun! 

The adjustment to marriage has been hard.  I feel like I've spent the last few months pointing out all of the things that we need to work on.  In light of this, I decided it was time to focus on the positive. I also really love the idea of relational giving ( 

So I made a list of things that Steve likes to do and I turned them into dates.  12 Dates of Christmas, only this is more like 11 Dates of the Year.  One for every month but April (our first anniversary will be something we plan together).  Steve gets to open one a week before the 1st of each month and then we'll put it on the calendar. I will be learning new things and participating in activities that I never thought I would engage in. 

Here's to a new year full of new adventures, growing love, and much laughter with my love!