In honor of our boy’s 2nd birthday, I thought I would share a little known fact about him. We get asked about his name all the time but don’t usually take the time to give the full story. So here it is!
I should start off saying, Justice was (and still is) our only boy name. Maybe we are too picky but there just haven’t been any other boy names that have really ever resonated with us. I’m great at helping others pick out names for their boy babes, but not for us! In fact, everyone asked us if we might pass on Pedro’s name… umm nope! Pedro is the third in a line of Pedros but he lies about his name at Starbucks! If I had a dollar for how many times I have heard, “What’s your real name?” or “Really? You don’t look like a Pedro…” I would have a fortune. Honestly it was never an option for us. After almost 14 years together, I still look at him sometimes and say, ” I can’t believe your name is Pedro!” Growing up a Jessica in the 90s was super common, and a Pedro in Alabama was really rare. So we wanted something in between, unique but not weird.
We found out we were pregnant on a Tuesday (June 2015). The following night we had church at the Beverly Wilshire. We were pleasantly surprised to find that our pastor’s wife, Chelsea Smith, was preaching. I can’t say how much I adore her… as a leader, as a human and as a friend. She’s the real deal. Anyway, this was a rare and special occasion as it was the first and only time she preached at our LA campus. Not only was her message amazing but it was super unique. She shared from Acts 1 about two characters you don’t often hear in the Biblical headlines, Justus (aka Joseph Barsabbas) and Matthias. If you aren’t familiar with them, that’s okay. Basically they were like the 13th and 14th disciples, accept they didn’t get the title or recognition. They pretty much lived life during Jesus’ ministry years with him and the guys but were always on the perimeter, waiting on the sidelines. After Jesus’ death and resurrection, the disciples were down to 11 courtesy of Judas’ betrayal. With an opening on the disciple lineup, Justus and Matthias were up for a promotion! But who would it be? They had both served faithfully for all these years without the fame. After basically flipping a coin(casting lots), Matthias got the position. Yet, Justus remained faithful.
We knew that night in our spirits that we were going to have a boy and that his name would be Justice (we just like this spelling better). Sidenote: that night at church our Pastor Judah randomly joked asking us when we were gonna have a baby! He ended up being the very first to know we were expecting, even before family!
As the weeks went by we fell even more in love with the name as we learned its meaning. Justice means: Righteousness of God; upright. A few months later we found out for a fact we were having a boy and there was no question about his name. Phew, what a relief!
But then, the middle name…. we had no idea where to start. The boys in my family are all JJ’s (Joshua Joel, Josiah Jeremiah, etc) so we started a list of potential J names. Would he be Justice Joel (after my dad)? Or maybe he could be Justice Judah (after our pastor who unapologetically threw his name in the hat)? Part of me really wanted a one syllable middle name for flow. Another part of me really wanted to find an A name- since he would have my same first initial, I wanted him to have Pedro’s same middle initial (Pedro’s middle name is Antonio). We played around with the idea of several names all the way up until he was being born! I told Pedro he could choose & I couldn’t be happier with his choice.
Throughout the entirety of our pregnancy we had a verse for our family as we prepared for our baby’s arrival.
Psalm 127: 3-4 Like arrows in the hands of a warrior, so are children born in a man’s youth. Blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them.
And there it was. All along. Our Righteous Weapon.
I am obsessed with his name. I love to say it, to write it, to type it, to think it. I literally could not imagine anything more fitting.
Hope you love his name too. If not, don’t tell me because I don’t care. But also don’t love it so much that you steal it. Kidding.. kind of.