SHILOH: The Meaning Behind the Name

Anyone who has walked through the dark valley of infertility, miscarriage, or inability to have children, has most likely found themselves clinging to the story of Hannah and her desire for a child in 1 Samuel 1. During our years of praying for a child, I found myself turning towards Hannah’s cry for a child over and over and over…

Hannah’s story is our story. It’s a story of faith. It’s a story of honest pain. It’s a story of pleading with God for the thing your heart desires most. We’ve said “look with compassion on our suffering…give a [child] to [us], then [we] will dedicate him [or her] to the Lord all the days of his [or her] life” (verse 11). When Hannah prayed this prayer, she was in Shiloh, Israel, which carries significant meaning to us.

Brad and Lindsey in Shiloh, Israel – May/June 2008
Right after Brad finished his Th.M. at Dallas Theological Seminary, we had the opportunity to complete his last class as a study trip to Israel for 3 weeks in May/June 2008. While we were thrilled about the completion of his degree, we were also in the thick of infertility treatments and beginning the road of shots, monitoring, hormones, and a lot of emotional transition.Our class soon became aware of this heaviness in our hearts. Many women empathized with Lindsey over the pain and a delayed desire. Men walked alongside of Brad — comforting him as well.When we got to Shiloh, we learned that this was the location where Hannah prayed. It had never clicked that Hannah stood in Shiloh and asked God for Samuel. When we were in Shiloh, the group stood around us, prayed for us (see above picture), as we continued our journey in trying to have children. We continued praying — knowing that we would one day have an answer one way or another.
1 Samuel 1:27
Hannah’s story ended with the birth of Samuel. Her prayer was answered. Our infertility story ended with an ovarian tumor, then the birth of our baby girl — Shiloh Lucia. Our prayers were answered. Your prayers were answered. The Lord is good all the time.It’s amazing to see the amount of people that have prayed for Shiloh — before her life began, as soon as we were pregnant, during the pregnancy, and now at her birth. Your involvement in our lives is evidence of the ways that the Lord uses people all around the world to encourage, support, and impact us. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you for being a part of one of the biggest and most precious parts of our lives. We look forward to you helping us continue to story…
  • Greta

    Well you know that had me tearing up ;).In my opinion, perfect, perfect name choice and how cool that y'all were actually there praying in the same location as Hannah. Doesn't get much cooler than that.Now, where's the Lucia coming from? (Is that where y'all honeymooned? St. Lucia?)

  • Catherine

    What an amazing story you have. I hope many are blessed by your patience, obedience, and faith in the One True God. Praise the Lord…all the time!

  • Tony

    I vividly remember that day that we prayed for you in Shiloh. Praise God for His answer to our prayers. Shiloh, as your new baby's name, is very appropriate and will remain as a testimony to God's faithfulness throughout her life. Praise YHWH!—Tony Shetter

  • Charles

    Glad to be a (mostly invisible) part of your story! 2 Cor 1:9ff

  • Shawn Baxter

    Lindsay, I will never forget that day at Shiloh when we had the privlege of praying over you and Brad. God truly is good all the time. And what a perfect name. She will be a constant reminder of God's faithfulness. I am beaming for you guys. Thank you for letting me be a part of this miracle. Shiloh is even more than we knew to pray for. May God richly bless your precious family.

  • Anonymous

    I was kinda growing fond of "Baby Bridges" – but this is a significant name with a powerful story behind it – all to the glory of God! May the Lord bless you and keep you, continue to shine His face upon you and give you peace. -Zach N (Seattle/Indonesia)

  • cit-students-unite

    what a beautiful story… I am in tears…. wow now I will hear that name and have a whole new understanding

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  • Bind My Wandering Heart

    I love this story!! Thank you so much for sharing it. I didn’t realise Shiloh is where Hannah prayed. What a wonderful and special name for your little girl.

    • Brad Bridges

      Thanks so much for your encouraging words. We didn’t realize that either. We are so thankful for our little one who is not so little anymore.

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