That afternoon, I went to get my smog check done for my DMV registration. There was a middle aged man painting a sign for the business. I happened to be sitting right next to where his paint supplies were gathered on the ground about twenty feet from where he was working. So, as I waited for the smog check to be completed, he would come over near me to get a new paint color or supply and then back up his ladder to continue working on the sign.
At one point, he chatted with me a little and asked the usual questions about the pregnancy. Boy or girl? How far along? When he asked, "Do you have a name?" I told him we weren't telling people yet, not even strangers! He seemed slightly disappointed and after chatting a little more, he went back to work, and I hunkered down into my smart phone to pass the time.
A few minutes later, he shouted something to me that sounded like "drinks." I couldn't hear what he was saying over the noise of the generator right behind me. "What?" I yelled back. He shouted it again, but I still couldn't hear. I noticed that my smog check was almost over, so I hauled my big, pregnant self out of my chair, walked over, and asked him what he said.
He looked me in the eye and said, "Grace. Is her name Grace?" My heart leaped.
I played it off saying something like, "That's a nice name. We haven't picked a middle name yet, so maybe we'll use that." But, then I had to ask, "Why did you think her name was Grace?"
"Something just told me it was," was his reply.
I couldn't hold it in anymore. "Well, you're right. Her name is Grace."
"Really?!" He responded. "Well, Amen!"
"We named her after the grace of God," I explained. He again responded with a resolute, "Amen."
My smog check was done at this point, so I paid the business owner and said goodbye to the painter prophet. On my way out, I used my cell phone camera to snap the above picture of him working away.
Michael and I treasure this story and have been telling it to all sorts of people. We believe that this interaction was God's gift to us, His way of saying that he sees and he knows our daughter. Michael and I have experienced God's grace in our lives in countless ways, so we could not think of a better thing to name her after than His incredible grace. The stranger's "Amens" felt like God himself was saying "Amen" to our daughter's name.
I can't wait to tell Grace this story.