Tiny Humans Need Names
Nothing short of undeserved grace has been a constant in the midst of mine and Allison’s privileged positions as children to exceptional parents, siblings to trustworthy confidants, spouses to forgiving lovers, employees to purpose-filled vocations, and friends to life-giving community.
Nothing less than blessed is how we feel about our new position as parents to an infant-sized delivery of exorbitant grace.
June 18, 2014 at 11:29 a.m. marked life’s first cry
for Harrison Craig Hughes.
Allison and I perceive a significant aspect of our role as parents to be that of provider. Our child will look to us for food, clean diapers, Eskimo kisses, band-aids for booboos, shoulders to cry on, wisdom to lean on, unrivaled support when cheering out his name, and unmatched forgiveness when his own mistakes leaves us calling out the dreaded trifecta of first, middle, and last name… Among many current needs that will precede later needs, little tiny humans need names.
During the first three years of our marriage, Allison and I would revisit the conversation about potential baby names should we be provided the opportunity at parenthood. Our relatively short lists of girl and boy names remained after confirming our pregnancy, but upon finding out the gender of Baby Hughes, there was near instant clarification for the name of our firstborn:
- Factor #1 – We like the name.
– If I’m going to be screaming from the sidelines at a soccer game, I’d prefer to scream a name I like. Presidents have carried the name Harrison, whether historical figures or iconic Hollywood actors, so I like that the name denotes a sense of regality yet also evokes an aura of approachability. Will my son ever be the Commander-in-chief or someone like Indiana Jones? Don’t know, but at least his name sounds good enough for either career path–I want to keep his options open.
- Factor #2 – We signify God’s provisions.
– Look it up in a book and you’ll see “Harrison” means “son of Harry.” Clever. In all seriousness though, for me this Harrison is genuinely a byproduct of Harris… Creek that is. If it weren’t for the people and mission of Harris Creek, our family’s home would probably not be anywhere near the Waco postal codes and our household (as well as our general outlook on life) would not be at its current level of health. As an extension of God’s grace, Harris Creek has provided our family with a testament to faithfulness, and by name alone (if not by character), our son will signify the provisions of a benevolent God. If there is anything I can provide my son, I hope it’s the truth that all necessary provisions come from God.
- We carry on a family name.
– Harrison is the first grandchild for my parents and Allison’s parents. I think my dad (Mark Hughes) was delighted to know our little nugget would carry on the Hughes name, and I think my father-in-law (Craig Vire) will be flattered to hear that his name will be passed down, too.
- We request God’s continued favor.
– The generational ties within his epithet are weighty, and we, as his parents, carry the weight of calling upon the Lord to do what only God can do. Following the precedent of families in the Bible, we desire to bestow a name as an act of recognition to God’s past provisions as well as an act of blessing towards the child’s future.
– We carry with us our own depravity and ask God to forgive our son for the sins he, too, will commit.
– We carry with us our own history of ups and downs, mountains and valleys, and we ask God to be a “crag,” a rock of steadfast strength and a firm fortress.
– We carry with us our own doubts and worries despite constant reminders of God’s mercy, and we ask God to keep doing much of the same yet something altogether new.
My son, Harrison Craig Hughes, there has never been anything like you in this world, and although I do not know what tomorrow holds, I know the God who holds tomorrow, and I can assure you, God makes all things new. What else can I say…
 “Life’s first cry and final breath Jesus commands my destiny; as he stands in victory, sin’s curse has lost its grip on me”
 Our mission statement–seeking the welfare of the city–comes from Jeremiah 29, which also gives instruction to make yourself at home, kick your shoes off to stay awhile, plant gardens and eat locally, take a spouse and have kids…
 We’ll call him “Harrison” and “Harris.” Perhaps “Heresy” a time or two when he’s feeling rambunctious.
 James 1:17 – “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.”
 Psalm 18:2 (The Voice) – “The Eternal is my rock, my fortress, and my salvation; He is my True God, the stronghold in which I hide, my strong shield, the horn that calls forth help, and my tall-walled tower.”