About Me

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Portland, OR, United States
As an aspiring theologian I live in a city, state, country and time that offers minimal allowance to stern conviction. However arousing this "fenced" position seems at times, I cannot stay silent or relent on that which sternly convicts the very core of who I am. If nothing else, this is the slow and steady, (rather infrequent) thought-life of one who has tried her turn at silence, failing miserably on all accounts. In my limited experience thus far, I have come to realize four very important facts of life which demand attention: First, that I am here by God’s appointment, second, in His keeping, third, under his training, and fourth, for His timing (Andrew Murray). The end of the story is still a mystery to me but I’ve relinquished my pen to its true author, leaving the future in a terribly exciting state.


A God of light; a God of dark

I'm listening to you now in the hallway, staring at my toes and trying to focus on chipped-polish. It’s no match for the aching sound of your tears. No matter how many books I’ve read on child development or the vast counsel and wisdom handed down from women far more advanced than I on the various stages of motherhood, I’m not sure I’ll ever get used to this in time for it to pass. You’re a “good sleeper”, an “easy baby” (as if there is such a thing). I have no reason to complain in the company of friends whose little ones cry for hours at bedtime. My heart overflows with gratefulness when I think of this indiscriminate blessing. However, as your teeth wage a ruthless war against your gums, the challenge has heightened and I feel myself being tested. 

The preciousness of your pleas pouring through the cracks in the door behind me is crushing to my spirit. While there was a time you would wail in segments with your earnestness to grab hold of my attention rising and falling, depending on the day’s events, this is new. It seems as though you are acutely aware of your surroundings at every moment. Just as my arms wrap you up and my feet begin toward your room, your tiny body tenses. I feel your heart rate quicken and limbs begin to squirm without purpose. You smother my face with slobbery kisses and babble loudly, reciting every vowel you know. You do this as though you’ve done something wrong to deserve punishment and now need only to earn enough “points” to keep me near. I ache as I praise your efforts and snuggle you in closer, knowing the nursery door is only a few feet ahead. And the night must come. Even Superman needs his sleep. It is essential that you know the sun will rise and fall each day, requiring much; necessitating rest. You need to grow. This is non-negotiable, however often I dream of it being otherwise. And I must help you.

You can’t see this, not yet. You can’t see how your daddy has prepped your room, turning on the nightlight, humidifier, and pulling the shades to help your eyes rest. You can’t hear the soft music over your own vocal chords and you’re unable to recognize the clean sheets pulled tightly around your mattress to keep you safe and warm. He's even made sure your favorite stuffed animals are at your side, reminding you that this is still home where you belong. No, all you see is darkness. All you comprehend is silence.

So as I lower you into bed and the room begins to dim, your crying turns to shrieking. And then your shrieking takes the form of a silent sob, which periodically comes up for air and fuel, and only so as to launch into another outpour of lamentation. As the door closes and you feel me leave, your weeping reaches its summit: a bellow of hopelessness I won’t ever be able to rightly define, decants from your throat. I quietly beg for you to stop and begin to feel the heavy flow of my own tears; those familiar streams. It’s a wonder they haven’t permanently stained my cheeks. I won't leave the hallway, not until I hear your heavy breathing slow, giving way to sleep.

If you could only know what I know ... If you could only trust that the darkness doesn’t mean that I am absent. If you could look into my eyes long enough, listen to my whispers in your ear, reminding you that I am constantly present and never going to leave you alone. If you could just remember how each morning I faithfully rush to your side, sweeping you up and filling the house with our giggles. If you could just realize that with the absence of light and distraction, you will learn to grow, learn to rest. If you could only comprehend how I ache for you, weep when you weep, and loathe the sound of your pain with every fiber of my being. If you could just see me now, pressing my face against the other side of your nursery door, praying for your safety, your health, your dreams. Have I not conveyed the depth of my love for you? Can you not hear my heart begging yours to know that I am still here, still for you, still wanting you? 

…Have I not earned your TRUST?

Oh God, how naive I've been. 

Are you still outside the door of my room? How long have you been crying? How long have you been waiting for me to trust in the faithfulness of your morning; the necessity of this night? Forgive me, I didn't notice you there...teaching me to know you in the darkness and rest in anticipation of the light.

“I will never leave you, nor forsake you.” 
Deuteronomy 31:6


  1. I am speechless right now with the emotional state of shock I am in. I can barely breathe between the tears that are streaming down my face. I have known this devestating heartache, unconditional devotional aching love for my own children and yet have been so niave to the other side of MY door. Oh gosh Shannon - thank you.