Asking God for direction can get interesting

Asking God for direction can get interesting

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“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?

4 Replies to “Asking God for direction can get interesting”

  1. I love Isaac’s story, Michelle. I came from a family of six kids, my hubby was an only child. I wanted four kids. He wasn’t certain he wanted even one, but was willing to settle for the politically correct two. After our second was born, I had a hard time accepting that was it. I still wanted at least one more child. I heard a radio speaker say that if we believe children are gifts from the Lord, maybe we should ask Him how many gifts He wants to give us instead of us telling Him how many we’ll accept. I prayed and asked God to change my husband’s attitude if He wanted us to have more children. And to change my attitude if He wanted me to be satisfied with two.
    Sometime later, out of the blue, my husband said he wanted to have another child. When I asked him what changed his mind, he didn’t know. He said he just kept feeling like someone was missing, our family wasn’t complete.
    Our “Isaac” is named Matthew David, which means “Gift of God, Beloved.” But he definitely adds a lot of laughter to our lives.

  2. I, too, love Isaac’s story, Michelle. My story is similar to Mary’s. I also came from a family of six. I wanted four children – two boys and two girls, and my husband was agreeable with that. However, my doctors were not. I weighed 92 lbs. when the day I was married, and had never been very healthy. Therefore, I had to have our children by C-section, and at the time (50s & 60s) one was allowed only three c-sections. More was considered too dangerous for both mother and baby. So, we had our three children. I got my two boys, but only one girl. Nancy Ellen (the oldest) was named after my best friend (Nancy) and my mother (Ellen). Lynn named Jim (James Wesley). His great grandfather’s name was James, and his father’s middle name was Wesley. Robert Lynn – well, we both liked the name Robert, and of course, Lynn is his father’s name. All of them accepted the Lord at an early age, have led an exemplar life, and have been a blessing and delight for Lynn and me.

    1. Thank you for sharing your story, Donna. I enjoyed hearing it and learning more about you. You sure were tiny on your wedding day! I loved hearing how you chose your children’s names. The Lord has truly blessed you and your family. You love the Lord and are a fine example to many.

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