Choosing a Baby Name

Choosing a child’s name is a huge responsibility for a parent. Think about it – your child will have the name you choose for the rest of his life.  That’s incredible!

When Christopher’s family was over on Sunday, Christopher mentioned that he and Anna Marie were going to spend an hour working on baby names that evening. This was not their first time pondering names, either. They take picking a name seriously, considering and praying about what the Lord would have for their child.

Here are most of the characteristics that they take into consideration when choosing a name:

  • Bible-based
  • The character traits of the person(s) in Scripture with the name (good and bad)
  • The meaning of the name
  • How the meaning of the first and middle names combine for a custom name meaning/life vision
  • How the first->middle->last sound together
  • The initials
  • Whether we, [Christopher and Anna Marie], like the name

I hope this will be an encouragement to those who are expecting a little one right now, and for those who are looking forward to a family someday — thoughts to ponder!

Serving Jesus,

Christopher and Anna Marie Maxwell
Christopher and Anna Marie Maxwell working on choosing a name for their baby.

“And the Lord said unto Moses, I will do this thing
also that thou hast spoken: for thou hast found
grace in my sight, and I know thee by name. “

Exodus 33:17

16 thoughts on “Choosing a Baby Name”

  1. We take names very seriously too! I guess what makes us a bit different is that we like our names to not be very popular but unique (and beautiful) as we hope each of our children are. With that said, we do still run across people here and there with the names that our children have but very rarely. Our names aren’t exactly from the Bible but have meanings that honor God.

    Our daughter’s first name means Prayerful and her middle name means Devoted to God. We prayed for her for years before we were blessed (as did many others) so it is very fitting. Together her name means Prayerfully Devoted to God, which we hope she will be too!

    Our son’s first name means Rejoice. His middle name means Born Again. So for him it is a double entendre. We rejoice because we have a second born, but we also rejoice because we are born again in Christ. We hope to rejoice for him being born again in Christ too when he is older.

    I personally love it when parents give thoughts to names for their children as I believe those on earth and in heaven will be referring to those names (maybe not in eternity but in this temporal age).
    Amen. Thank you.

  2. We too feel that names are really important and spent a long time choosing ones that meant good things. Now I love speaking the meaning over my children. One of my daughters is shy and quiet but her full name means “mighty in battle, the Lord is with you.” She just glows when I call her that and it gives her courage.
    When I was pregnant with number 5 I felt very strongly that our baby should be called Malachi. We didn’t know if it was a boy or a girl and we already had 4 girls, so everyone presumed that it was another girl. But the name was from the Lord when Theodore Malachi arrived. (Theodore meaning Gift of God). It was the first thing I spoke over him. He is still very little but I wait to see how he lives out his name which mean The Lord’s messenger.
    I look forward to hearing what they come up with. Many blessings.

  3. It certainly can be a very long, difficult thing to choose a baby name. We are pondering our fourth right now. We have 2 boys with Bible names, because my husband feels that is best ( I can’t disagree with that). Our daughter however, does not have a Bible name but a name that has a virtuous meaning. Due to problems requiring a scan we do know we are expecting another boy. So, we are praying and searching for the right name.

    Best wishes to the young family on their coming child and naming process!
    And to you too.

  4. As we are getting ready to finalize our children’s adoption, we get to rename them. We were happy to find out that our daughter’s new name will mean “Unity, Victorious people,Cheerful and merry” and our son’s new name will mean “Uplifted, Who is like God,and Protector” Considering what they have come out of and what God has brought us through to make us a family, both names are perfect.

  5. I have read your post Sarah, and also considered the comments left by others about this post. This is something that we did not do as parents with our children – as I was not a Christian at the time – and I can see how important this concept is now. The names of our children are related to people in our families who meant a great deal to us, but how much more impact it would have if they were important to us because they were people of integrity in the Bible.

    Anna Marie looks so full of joy and contentment, even at this late stage of her pregnancy. She and the whole family are in my prayers.


    Cate N.
    Thank you.

  6. It amazes me how many people I’ve encountered who actually say they don’t worry about what the name means. I think your criteria are really good, except that I never felt the name had to appear in the Bible as long as the meaning was good and it wasn’t too “worldly.” I guess what I mean by “worldly” is that the name has a definite connection to Hollywood celebrities, or seems like a hippie name or something like that which I think should be avoided. I also personally felt the need to not use names that were in the top 20 currently popular names, which meant I had to give up a few I liked, but I had a bit of experience with too many other kids having the same name as me when I was little. I think it’s a very important responsibility to pick a child’s name and especially think it deserves prayer. I look forward to hearing what you choose!

  7. Such a sweet photo of a precious couple! 🙂
    I completely agree that couples should spend much time, prayer, and thought when choosing a name for their child.
    So eager to hear news about the baby’s arrival AND the name that Christopher and Anna Marie have chosen!
    Love, Mrs. Patti 🙂

  8. How exciting that God is giving them another child to name and raise in the nurture and admonition of the Lord! We eagerly await the surprise with you all!

    With love and prayers from NJ

    Lisa and Hannah

  9. I think it is best to decide on a short list of names before you are even expecting. I think that many couples get so caught up in the excitement of pregnancy, they can’t think straight. That’s how bad baby names are born. I wrote a list of names years ago and brought it with me to the hospital. My husband and I also decided that I would name the first girl and he would name the first boy. It kept us from fighting over names.

  10. I agree wholeheartedly with this post! 🙂 So far we have an Abigail Verity, Hannah Grace and a Nathaniel James – we wanted all of them to have a Biblical role model for a first name and for the middle names we chose virtue names for the girls and a second role model for the boy. I’m hoping it will be a blessing as they get older to strive for the prize following those they’re named after! 🙂 Praying for Anna Marie and Christopher and the little one being knit! 🙂

  11. Very exciting to read about Anna Marie and Christopher awaiting their baby anytime now.

    My due day was Feb 6th and you asked me to let you know.
    So here are the news:

    Our firstborn child, a son, was born in the morning of Feb 8th.

    To God be all the glory. He answered our prayers and gave a save delivery and a healthy mother and baby. He carried us through 9 hours of labor (one hour short time before the end being very hard). We had a homebirth with a midwife who is also a believer.

    About the name:
    His first name is very uncommon: Schealtiel (Haggai 1,1) and it means “I have asked of God”. This name was in my husbands heart for 5 years, a promise of the Lord, and he/we prayed…
    His middle name is the name of his father: Martin

    Psalm 113:9 He maketh the barren woman to keep house, and to be a joyful mother of children. Praise ye the LORD.

    Simone from Germany
    Yeah and congratulations. Thank you for letting us know.

  12. As I read about how the meaning of names is very important, (I couldn’t agree more) I also wanted to give a little thought.
    My husband’s name is Paul (his whole family has biblical names) & we named our first born son after him too, but if we had only looked at the meaning of Paul which means
    “Little”, then I would not have chose it. My son’s full name does mean “Little Champion” which he loves, but the meaning of Paul would not have been my choice if I was only going on meaning.
    If we look at the Apostle Paul he was anything but “Little”, so, if you feel that God is leading you to a name, but the meaning is not to your liking, please do not disregard the name.

  13. I love reading the comments of how others have chosen names with purpose and meaning. I also caught myself slightly when I saw the phrase “whether we [Christopher and Anna Marie] like the name.” This brought back many memories of well-meaning family members who tried to “suggest” names for us, and who weren’t very happy when we chose not to share the names we were considering until after each child was born. (We took the responsibility of naming each child very seriously as well.)

    What an exciting time to know, Christopher and Anna Marie, that in such a short time you’ll get to meet the child that the Lord has been knitting together, and that you have the awesome opportunity to raise for His kingdom. We are praying for you and looking forward to “meeting” your new family member in the coming weeks!

  14. Two of our daughters’ names were given to us by the Lord before they were conceived. One has the middle name Grace. I thought that meant she would be all sweetness and sunshine. Instead it meant we would need grace to raise her because she’s all spitfire and attitude. Our last daughter was such a surprise that we were at an absolute loss as to what to name her. It took a long time to name her, but we settled on the middle name Faith because her pregnancy was a complete walk of faith due to severe complications. Naming is fun, but it is a real challenge. I remember always breathing a sigh of relief when I saw the babies for the first time and feeling like the name fit. Congratulations and blessings to Christopher and Anna Marie.

  15. What a sweet time to pray together as parents and seek the Lord for the perfect name for His gift of a child. I pray you will have a delightful time as you prepare these final days preceding birth.
    I always wonder, “How will we come up with another name that we like as much as the names for the children we already have?” Then, God amazes us again, and gives us the name in HIS timing. We have not known the gender prior to birth, so it has been a discussion and prayer during pregnancy, and after the child arrives.
    Baby number 6 was named Charis Elizabeth. God carefully covered her birth with his abundant grace.
    Baby number 7 was the most difficult name, but we felt the Lord leading us to Timothy, which means “honoring God.” Little did we know that the season of life following his birth would be a challenging time of testing of our faith to honor God, even when it is extremely hard.
    Love, love, love…the blessing of children and their names. We rejoice with you and wait eagerly for news of the arrival!

  16. I really enjoyed reading the thoughts shared here (including the comments). A lot of good thoughts!
    I always look forward to seeing what names people choose!
    I note too that it often reveals a great deal about the parents!

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