It was the summer of 1969, my father was serving in the Air Force and my family was stationed with him in the Philippines. My sister, Michelle, was about to be born and this family of three would become a family of four. My parents were adventurous people, everything from scouring erupting volcanos to witnessing Easter self-crucifixions. A few years earlier, my Mom suffered a miscarriage of a baby boy they named, Joshua David. With this recent birth, my parents were ready to call their family done. However, the Lord spoke to my Mom and told her that she was not done and that she would have one more. Much like Mary, my Mom treasured those words in her heart and waited until the time.
Fast forward 8 years, my family was vacationing at Callaway Gardens in Pine Mountain, GA. That evening the Lord spoke to my Mom in a dream and said, “You are pregnant with a boy.” She awoke my Dad and they named me, Robert Jonathan. Robert meaning “Bright Fame” and Jonathan “God’s gift”. To this day, my Mom reminds me of the meaning of my name, “You are Robert Jonathan. You are bright fame that God has given.”
Her life verse for me was Isaiah 9:6, “And the governments of the world will be upon his shoulders.”
Nine months later, I entered the world with great optimism and a family that treasured me. To my father, this was a special experience. Up to that time, fathers were not allowed in the delivery room. But, times had changed and my father was able to witness my birth and cut the umbilical cord of his first born son.
My two older, elementary aged sisters saw a great opportunity with my birth. They saw a buddy to hang out with, a boy to play dress up, a student for their play school, and ultimately a listening ear when life got hard.
To my Mom, I was the fulfillment of a promise – a promise spoken eight years prior and conceived in trust that God would keep His word. From that moment on she purposed to introduce me to the God of Promise. I grew up in intercessory prayer rooms and long church services. From an early age, she taught me how to pray, how to hear from God, and how to be led by God. She was fearless and confident, and to this day she remains a spiritual anchor for our entire family.