I remember the first time I saw my name in print. It was the spring of 1999 just before our June 19th wedding, and it was on a hotel reservation that had come in the mail for our road-trip honeymoon. Since we weren’t old enough to have the option of renting a car, we decided we probably shouldn’t fly anywhere, so we drove. Oh the challenges for those married young.
When I got that envelope in the mail I remember just staring at that name. Heather Meadows. That was going to be me. I didn’t identify with the name. I had spent eighteen years as Heather Cochrane, but I was soon to take on a new name. A name given to me by my husband, and one I’ve spent the last sixteen identified by.
Over the years I received occasional comments about it. For instance, one was when we had our family accounting business. I called the IRS for an audit on one of our accounts. I gave all the necessary information along with my name and the agent said, “Wasn’t your mom creative.” I was taken aback because my Mom and I shared the same office, prompting my mind to consider that maybe the agent had spoke to her regarding the account, but still wondering how in the world the agent knew we were related. Something clicked quickly, and I amusingly informed the agent that “Meadows” was my married name.
That scenario has happened more than once. It’s where I came up with saying, “Heather Meadows. Heather like a flower. Meadows like a field.” It is a nice fit. And sweeter still—it was given to me!
I’ve been so proud to carry my husband’s name and that of his family’s. I remember shortly after we got married having this discussion about how Christ gives us His name when we accept Him as our Lord and Savior—we become Christians, carrying His name and representing Him to others. And Jesus paid it all to give us His name. It is truly a gift— given!
We speak to our children about their names too. We teach them that their name is a reflection of their family, and that their actions should honor the name which has been given to them. Just as we steward those things the Lord has entrusted to us, our time, our money, our home, our vehicles; we must steward the name He has given us.
And it is this name I have carried the last sixteen years, the name I have identified myself with that I slowly become detached from in the process of changing the website name.
Why change the name of our website?
To be completely transparent, the answer is, I’m not completely sure.
Brandon and I knew God was stirring change. We knew this tragic story of loss and injury had to be shared. The Lord has given us enough opportunities to experience how He can use it for others. I know He spared my life for far more than my own fulfillment of it. What He accomplished on that dirt road back in 1988, and in those operating rooms and in that hospital bed and in those therapy sessions was for His glory. And it must be shared.
Our ongoing online development revealed to us that most of the searches going to Heather’s Blessed JouRNey were simply searches for Heather Meadows. So it seemed obvious to us that if we were going to change it, we’d just change it to my name. Make it “easy peasy” for visitors to find us and to share our testimony.
Well. Actually. It would have been just that…simple. In the process of trying to obtain heathermeadows.com, I became further and further removed from my own name. This was never about me to begin with. However, being real, it seems natural to say, “yes, that’s me!” or raise a hand, when your name is called. But not in this story. No. I was four months asking to obtain a domain of my own name. I was ten thousand dollars removed from my own name.
“By definition, a God-ordained dream will always be beyond your ability and beyond your resources. But that is how God gets the glory.” Mark Batterson, The Grave Robber
I’m so thankful this was complicated. I’m so thankful it wasn’t a simple process. What would we have missed had it been?
We would have missed growing in trust and obedience. We would have missed an experience to be totally wowed and impressed by His hand at work in the smallest details. We would have missed a gift given. We would have missed an opportunity to build a friendship, visit a new place and we would have missed a chance to share our story. Additionally, we would have missed the anticipation of what He wants to do through what He’s already done.
Because it wasn’t simple, we now get to meet the sweet couple who generously gave us our new online home, Joel and Lori Pacheco. In one week we will be meeting them face to face, hugging their necks, sharing some meals, and speaking at their church. We’re getting far more than a domain name– that would have been too simple!
Mark Batterson writes in The Grave Robber, “And when you experience a miracle, the way you steward it is by believing God for even bigger and better miracles.”
Yes. My name is Heather Meadows and I’m a steward. I’m stewarding some miracles. From that seven year-old little girl, to her married name, to the website she shares it at. All beyond my abilities. All for God’s glory!
I pray that through this gift given to me, the Lord will pass on many more gifts. It is my hope to give a little something to you in each visit. The baby nurse in me administers little doses of what little babies need. May you receive the perfect portion of encouragement, inspiration, joy, and strength, through Him who provides for all our needs.
Isaiah 12:4 ESV
And you will say in that day:
“Give thanks to the Lord,
call upon His name,
make known His deeds among the peoples,
proclaim that His name is exalted.
*Still to come– a picture with Joel and Lori!
*click heathermeadows.com to tour the new site
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