We have had this name as our top contender for a boy name since we found out we were pregnant with our first. Seeing that we have had two girls, it remained at the top of our list when we got pregnant this time. We went back to the drawing board and ultimately, still felt this was our favorite.
As with each of the girls names (Claire and Brooke), I had a clear moment where I sensed the Lord leading me to choose their names. I can remember where I was in the very moment with each of them that the confidence, clarify, and peace came to declare Claire as Claire and Brooke as Brooke. With each, we felt led by our faith, guided in prayer, and ultimately motivated by our life prayers for them to choose their names.
With Claire, I loved that Saint Clare of Assisi was known as a woman of prayer. I appreciated that while she was brought up in a life of privilege, she was concerned for the poor and put herself in a position of service to others. Our hope has always been that Claire would grow up to be a women of prayer, committed to serving others and positioning herself as a Light for Christ. It is such a joy to see already in her these traits coming true in how she prays for people and cares for peoples.
With Brooke, we chose her name in hopes that she would root herself in God, His word, and the security that comes from being anchored in His will - like a Brook or tree planted near water in Jeremiah 17:8:
"They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.”
We desired for her to both thirst for Jesus and find the most fulfilling satisfaction for such thirsts always spring forth from Him. We also prayed that both her name and her life would make evident to others what it looks like to not “run on empty” but rather to be deeply satisfied by the Living Water that comes from a personal relationship with Christ.
What I realized after having Brooke was that so much of the names we chose for our daughters was just as much something the Lord wanted me to learn through them as their mother as well. With Claire, I learned how fervent in prayer motherhood makes me. With Brooke, I learned quickly how much I myself needed to stay well-watered and planted near the streams of Life in order to ever pour into my kids. With Owen, it was no different. The only difference was when we got to name our child this and when God led me to recognize the meaning behind the name he had laid on our hearts almost five years ago.
Owen means "young warrior."
The confirmation of Owen's name came when I continued to feel the Lord nudging me to recognize that in this season of welcoming our third child, I needed to have a quiet confidence to stand strong, like a warrior. I continued to sense this in my quiet times to the point that one day I asked myself, "Doesn't Owen mean warrior or something?" As soon as I looked it up and saw that indeed it did, my husband and I agreed that we would happily settle on that name with certainty.
Initially I thought of a warrior with tenacity and toughness, but God kept leading me to see that acting as a warrior in this season wasn't so much physical toughness as it was spiritual. In the woes of motherhood, God has reminded me that this is as season both for myself and to pray over Owen that we will find strength in the armor of God. Not that we will fight using fear or aggression, but rather that in a calm, collected confidence, we can face whatever comes our way. I so pray this over my son and am thankful God led me to this as something I too will pray over myself in this season of transitioning into life as a mom of three.
As for Oaks, it is my husband's middle name and one that we wanted to pass down. I love the visual of an Oak tree though and how Oaks is used in Scripture as it is here in Isaiah 61:1-3:
"The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me, because the LORD has anointed me to bring good news to the afflicted; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to captives and freedom to prisoners; to proclaim the favorable year of the LORD and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn, to grant those who mourn in Zion, giving them a garland instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, the mantle of praise instead of a spirit of fainting. So they will be called oaks of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified."
Although this is not how my in-laws came up with the middle name for my husband, it adds that much more meaning for us as we pass down the name to our one and only son.