Monday, January 11, 2016

Why He is Named Kairus

Many have asked how we came up with the name Kairus (rhymes with iris) for our son. We searched and searched for baby names and we had our list gleaned from every possible baby name website, but none seemed to feel just right when we thought about our baby.

Then this name "Kairus" came to us and it just seemed meant to be. Like how when you're young people say to you about your future spouse, "You'll just know when it's the one" and you're baffled because what does it look like and feel like to just know. And then you meet that person and you just know. When we came across the name Kairus, we just knew.

Zac came home from work one day and told me, "I worked with a guy today named Kairus. Isn't that a neat name?" In hindsight, it was pretty crazy how he came to even meet that Kairus that day. It all happened because Zac asked to be invited to a meeting that he normally wouldn't attend, and Kairus happened to be at that meeting too. Zac wouldn't have known Kairus' name except for he was running late that day so everyone was saying, "Where's Kairus, is Kairus coming to the meeting today?" Arriving late to the meeting, Kairus missed introductions, spoke only a few words, and then left immediately afterward.

My heart started beating a little faster when Zac told me the name Kairus and I said, "I just read a parenting blog post about the Greek words chronos and kairos and it really struck a chord in my heart. I think we have something here."

I showed him this blog post on Momastery by Glenna Doyle Melton. PLEASE take a few minutes to read it after you're done here, it's incredibly powerful and makes me cry beautiful tears each time I read it. She describes kairos as "God’s time. It’s time outside of time. It’s metaphysical time. Kairos is those magical moments in which time stands still."

In regards to parenting, she describes chronos (chronological time) as those moments that march on that are fairly insignificant, like waiting in the parent pick-up line at school or counting the hours until Daddy comes home. Kairos parenting moments are those that take your breath away, when you pause and your heart swells inside of you with joy and awe and gratitude.

In our pregnancy with Kairus, we had a few such moments when heaven and earth seemed to collide. The most profound was when I had an early ultrasound to make sure the baby was okay. My appointment was in the afternoon, and Feven (who didn't nap anymore) fell asleep in the car on the way to the clinic. And she was OUT, let me tell you. I carried her in and she slept on my shoulder while I checked in...and sat in the waiting room...and walked to the exam room. She never woke up! The ultrasound tech working told me that it would be okay if Feven stayed sleeping on me, I'd just have to lay on the bed and hold her up higher on me so they could access my tummy for an ultrasound.

So there I lay with my sweet, sleeping daughter on my chest. My arms were wrapped around her and I felt so much love for her. I felt her chest rise and fall against mine as she slept peacefully. I felt so blessed in that moment, and knew that whatever we learned via the ultrasound, I was more blessed than I ever deserved to be to have this beautiful daughter to call my own.

The tech told me to hold my breath to see if they could "see" a heartbeat from the baby. I held my breath and was even more aware of the rise and fall of Feven's chest as she slept. On the screen I saw movement and a series of rapid lines forming at the bottom of the screen. My baby's heartbeat.

That moment, holding my sleeping daughter in my arms and feeling her breathing, and at the same time seeing the heartbeat of the child growing inside me was one of the most beautiful in my life. It showed me God's faithfulness to me in the past and His promise for the future.

Tears leaked from the corners of my eyes, down the sides of my face, and onto the pillow as I tried not to let happy sobs escape because I was still holding my breath! Zac was not there because we didn't have any clue we'd get to see a heartbeat, but somehow that made the moment more sacred because it was just me and God. Kairos.

Another definition of kairos according to J.R. Briggs is "...the time of possibility – moments in our day, our week, our month, our year or our lifetime that define us." For years I was not interested in a biological child. I was overwhelmed and afraid from a previous miscarriage years ago and did not have a desire to go through that again. Zac did not pressure me, but said, "I'll pray that God will change your heart if this is meant to be for our family." So he prayed and God changed me and I wanted to be pregnant and I wanted to give birth. Bringing a life into the world further defined me and taught me in ways I never would have imagined but so desperately needed. Kairos. God intervened and brought about something extraordinary.

Kairos also happened 5 weeks into the pregnancy when I began bleeding. I was so scared I was losing another baby. I remembered the words of a dear friend of mine and resolved to do everything I could to take care of myself, and then I prayed a desperate prayer on the bathroom floor, "God, I need YOU to fight for this baby. I will do my best, but I need you to fight." And from that moment on the bleeding subsided and I had no trouble from that point on. Isn't that incredible? Kairos. Heaven and earth collided.

Even our due date seemed to speak of kairos. I had surgery on March 7, 2014 and there were concerns that I would lose an ovary when all was said and done. Glory be to God that the surgery went well, and when we got pregnant the due date we were given was March 7, 2015. ONE YEAR TO THE DAY from my surgery. I don't care who you are or how great of a planner you are, you cannot time your body to do this. My God redeemed this body of mine - from a sick and sorry state on March 7th, 2014 to a healthy body, able to conceive, and growing a baby to term by March 7, 2015.

So we landed on the name Kairus. From the Greek kairos. We worried that people would have a hard time pronouncing his name, or that it would be too "out there." But with all God did for us in bringing us this life, it seemed only fitting that he be named Kairus.

"Kairos refers to the opportune time and/or place--that is, the right or appropriate time to say or do the right or appropriate thing" and this is our prayer for our son as he goes through this life. We pray that God would place Kairus in the right place at the right time to glorify and honor God and point people to Him.