Question 1: Why the name Simon?
Adam and I both liked the name Simon before we were even pregnant the second time. However, the name became a front-runner after we found out about Simon's prognosis as we both wanted a biblical name for the baby. There are several Simons mentioned in the bible, but the three most notable to me are: Simon Peter (one of Jesus' 12 apostles), Simon the Zealot (another apostle), Simon of Cyrene (who carried the cross for Jesus). All are strong men of Christ and were faithful to him.
We also googled what the meaning of Simon meant before we finally chose it. It means, “to hear, to be heard and to be obedient.” We believe that Simon is without question being heard. Thanks to those who have shared their stories of hope, love, and life changed through Christ with us, we know sweet Simon's voice is being heard in a mighty way. I am confident our Lord is going to say “Well done, good and faithful servant” to our boy (Matthew 25:21).
One of my biggest prayers is that we do actually hear Simon. I would be forever grateful if we got a few minutes of Simon breathing. We understand that Simon, even if he does make it through labor (likelihood is about 30%), will likely be too weak to make any noise. But nothing would make me more proud than to hear a few soft Simon squeaks.
In case anyone was wondering, I already have a few nicknames for Simon, Sisi (long i sound, of course). And Simey!
I've always really liked the name, even without a significant back-story. I of course knew of Simon Peter as one of Jesus' 12 disciples. I love two of the stories that reveal Simon Peter's character in the Bible. In one, Jesus call him to walk on the sea, but Peter's faith fails him and he begins to drown. My other favorite is where Simon Peter flies off the handle and cuts off the ear of one in the mob of accusers when they attempt to arrest Jesus and ultimately kill him. A vagabond fisherman, unskilled in weaponry, was ready to take on an angry mob of armed men in order to save this man who claimed to be God.
I think the most meaningful context for Simon's name, to me, comes from Simon of Cyrene. Christ was too badly beaten and too tired to carry the cross to the hill on which he would be killed, so the Roman's grabbed a bystander from the crowd known as Simon of Cyrene to carry the cross on his behalf. A bystander in the crowd helped Christ fulfill his destiny of redeeming all of humanity! Simon of Cyrene's actual spoken words were never recorded in history, but we know his name for the small role he played in eternity. He helped Jesus, Son of God, manage his physical suffering and literally carried the cross. Who else gets to say that in all of history?