They pictured tiny little cowboys running wild in boots. They pictured pretty little girls twirling dainty in sun-splashed dresses.
Each little boy, each little girl had a name, a dream attached.
So the man, he loved to fish, he loved to hunt. He loved a certain huntin’ store and thought the name of that store a pretty one for a someday little girl. And the woman, she loved the man and she loved the dream and even though it seemed a tiny bit crazy, she thought it a pretty name too.
So years passed by and the couple said their vows but before the babies with names and dreams a four-legged creature was first to fill their nest.
Now, had that couple known that someday down the road they would welcome not one, not two, but three little girls into their tiny home in Michigan, perhaps they would have named the four-legged creature differently. But they didn’t know. How could they know? And that name, of the huntin’ store, seemed to fit the creature just right.
The couple lived on happily as their house filled up with pink. Filled right to the roof with laughter and dolls and dancing feet. And the man, he didn’t get the wrestling team he’d sort of always dreamed of but what he did get seemed even better.
Twelve years into happily ever after the woman turned to the man and smiled, “Ready for one more?”
“Of course,” came his reply.
For twenty weeks they waited and wondered. Maybe? This time? A cowboy in boots? But the cowboy names and the cowboy dreams would have to wait a few more years because the black and white TV screen showed another little girl.
So the couple that had a list of boy names as long as a lasso, scratched their heads and wondered how’d they ever come up with another perfect name for another perfect girl.
Remington? NO! NO! NO!
Colt? Hmm… Maybe?
Nothing seemed quite right.
Now, this couple had a tradition, a secret weapon of sorts. For each little girl they prayed. From beginning to end they prayed. For health and happiness and hope in a Savior they prayed for the hearts of their girls. And they asked that Savior if He’d shed some light. If He’d, please, give them a message to speak over each little girl. A special message from God, just for her, to be spoken over her by her father.
The first little girl became God’s Blessing.
The second God’s Message of Hope.
Six months into the nine-month wait the man turned to the woman and smiled, “God spoke to me,” he said. “She’s God’s Promise.”
With tears in her eyes, the woman replied, “That’s what He’s been telling me too.”
But the name? That stubborn name refused come.
“We could name her Cabela,” the man said one day.
“Could we?” The woman asked as joy turned in her heart. As a nameless gift of God turned happy in her belly. “We’ve always loved that name…”
“We could call her Belle, for short.”
“I love that. Belle.”
Together the couple continued to pray. They prayed and asked for a name. They invited God in, they asked Him, please, to affirm the name they chose.
They knew they loved that name. That name they’d always dreamt of. But that huntin’ store? And that four-legged creature, now long gone?
They wanted to be sure.
Only God could make them sure.
The couple turned to each other and smiled, “Why haven’t we Googled names that mean God’s promise?”
The man, he got his computer and filled the search field with hope. With curious joy at what might follow.
And wouldn’t you know? How could anyone know? That God glory can show up on Google? Can show up in a list of names.
In a list of names that mean God’s promise. And at the very top of the list…
Belle, Bella, Carabelle…which seemed awful close to that long-loved name.
God had been in it all along but it wasn’t until they invited Him in that the thread began to unravel.
The couple had learned it again and again. Over broken friendships and lost jobs. Over big disappointments and small inconveniences. The simple act of inviting God in to the twisted, the mangled, the knotted, the tangled would always, eventually, unravel Glory. Unravel a tapestry that could only be crafted by His unfailing hands.
“People will laugh, and joke, and tease.”
“They’ll look at us funny.”
“Let them,” the couple agreed.
For nothing could steal their joy.
Nothing and no one in the whole wild world could steal God’s Promise away.
Could steal their long-loved little girl, Cabellea Wren…
Their precious, perfect Belle.