Little Vinny arrived just hours before his due date. He was born on July 28, 2015, weighing in at 6 lbs. and 8 oz. Coincidently (if you believe in coincidences) Laura and her twin sister Janine, (Aunt Janine), were born on 6/8. Vinny came into this world at 11:32 p.m. and he is just about 48 hours old as I write this. I can’t believe he has been here for only 48 hours…we all feel like he has been here a lot longer that that! We just met him but we feel like we have known him for so long. The first time I saw him I had this sense I knew him because I heard so much about him and Laura kept us updated every step along the way. Although Mike and Laura live in Boston whenever we did see them these last 9 months it always felt like they were a family of three. And I never heard a mother call her child by their name for as long as Laura did throughout the pregnancy. He was never “The baby.” He has always been “Vinny.”
God spoke to the prophet Jeremiah these words: “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; (Jeremiah 1:5). I take that as a universal principle; that God knows each one of us in utero. He forms our body and thus knows every single part of us. He is intimately involved with us. And I have no Biblical basis for this but I like to think that He may even name us for Himself. In essence we have an earthly name, the one that our parents give us, but also a kind of spiritual name that God our Father gives us and knows us by. Throughout the Bible people are given multiple names (Saul also known as Paul; Simon also known as Peter; Daniel, also known as Beltehazzar, etc.) and different names had different meanings. So why wouldn’t we have more than one name? For that matter, according to Isaiah 40:25-26, even the stars have names and there are billions upon billions of them!
So if God knows the stars then certainly He knows us and calls us each by name…whatever that name is! (I just hope I am not named after one of the seven dwarfs!). In the ancient Hebrew and Jewish culture, the name had great importance. A name revealed some characteristic about your birth, or a hope for your future. The name stood for the whole character of a person, as it was known, manifested or in some way revealed. That is why it is important to set apart God’s name, as in the Lord’s prayer. (“Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name…”) and the third commandment (“You shall not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain.”).
The name Vincent is from the Roman name Vincentius, which was from the Latin vincere, meaning “to conquer“. “To Conquer”. That is certainly appropriate for our new grandson. As he faces surgery in the next few days we are believing that God will help him to conquer his heart defect and any obstacles standing in his way to a long and healthy life. God loves Vincent deeply. He knows Him intimately. He knew him before he was born and will know him throughout his life. There is nothing hidden from his gaze and no area of his life that He is unconcerned about. It is a life long love affair that God has with him.
God longs for us. He sings us to sleep and waits for us to wake to start another day with Him by our side. When we are unaware of Him He is still present with us. Zephaniah wrote: