To Walk


My one-year-old daughter Corrie has only been walking for a few weeks, and she still prefers crawling.  Walking is hard, and her little legs tire easily–I have to push her ever-so-gently to practice this new skill.

Yesterday as we left a store, I put her down on the sidewalk, took her hand, and coaxed her toward the car.  Her steps were awkward and slow, and she wasn’t particularly happy with me–but we still made progress. 

After several yards we approached some steep stairs, and we saw them at the same time.  Before I could reach down to lift her, she cried out in fear at this scary obstacle ahead, dropping to her bottom right on the sidewalk.  I swooped her up into my arms and laughed as I kissed her head.  "Silly girl," I whispered.  "You know I’ll carry you through the really hard parts.  But sometimes you just have to walk."

Like a lightning bolt, the thought hit me:  how many times has God whispered that same thought to me?  I cry out in fear at the obstacle in front of me, and like a frightened toddler I want to stop walking and SIT right where I am.  Just as I have to coax my daughter into strengthening her little legs, my Father has to push me to strengthen mine.  When I’d rather sit, He sometimes pushes.  But He never lets my legs give way–when the road gets too steep for me, He carries me and sets me down gently on the other side. 

Certainly my steps aren’t pretty.  To Him I must look like a bumbling toddler much of the time.  But just as I could never disdain my daughter’s efforts, He will never disdain mine.  He’ll push, pull, coax and carry, but always we’ll move forward.  Together.

That’s where the metaphor ends.  The day will come when Corrie will let go of my hand and run ahead on her own.  But not me.  As I walk this journey of faith, my steps will hopefully strengthen, but He will never, NEVER let go of my hand.

28 thoughts on “To Walk

  1. peach says:

    The tears rolled down my cheeks as I read this post and saw myself in those shaky steps of obedience. I feel so often I sit down on my ever-widening rump and worry about what looks so scary up ahead. May the last line be true for me as well, sweet Shannon, as I cling to His path, strengthen my steps, and hang on to His ever-present hand. Beautiful post, and oh so timely.

  2. Kate says:

    My goosebumps are HUGE from this. His unconditional love is beyond measure. What a beautiful reminder of his sacrifice and love for us. So beautifuly said Shannon. πŸ™‚

  3. momrn2 says:

    So very, very timely! I am currently in the place where “sitting” sounds so good. I know this place. I can’t see everything ahead and what I do see looks scary. Can’t I just stay here?
    I know I have been recently lifted… I just didn’t realize before this moment that it was God picking me up and saying, “silly girl… I will carry you during the difficult parts…but you must walk.”
    Thanks friend! Today, although my humanness says to plop and panic, I will persevere. I will put one step in front of the other and walk… hand in hand with my Father.

  4. Stacey says:

    You always do such a good job saying it like it is. This post was so good and really got me thinking. I stop by everyday just to see life through your eyes and what a great life it is! It’s obvious that you love the Lord, your family, friends and life!

  5. mimi2six says:

    Your beautiful post is a profound observation of what it means to walk in grace. I need to be reminded of that truth so very often.

  6. GiBee says:

    oh, man… Shannon! This post is so awesome!
    You said: “To Him I must look like a bumbling toddler much of the time”
    You know what? ME TOO!
    Praise God He will to push us towards growth, but He won’t ever let go.
    Thanks for sharing your lightning bolt with us!

  7. Sandra says:

    Great post Shannon. I mentioned you on my blog this morning because your post reminded me of the Nooma DVD’s by Rob Bell. I have the one called Rain and it talks about THIS, what you’re talking about in your post.
    I have a link up for it on my blog so if you get a chance I would love for you to watch it and then let me know what you think πŸ™‚
    Thanks again for a wonderful post πŸ™‚

  8. HeatherW says:

    Reminds me of Psalm 56:13:
    For you have delivered my soul from death and my feet from stumbling, that I may walk before God in the light of life.
    This is the verse we sent out to our army of prayer warriors announcing that at 3, our precious daughter was finally walking. Thanks be to God for precious steps! Congrats!

  9. Shelley says:

    Just beautiful! There is nothing sweeter than watching a new “toddler” toddle πŸ™‚ I wonder if that’s how God feels about us…although I feel FAR from sweet most of the time. Thanks for a lovely post.

  10. Shalee says:

    God really is a father in all sense of the word. Thank you so much for sharing how He has opened your eyes again. I read them and think, “God is using Shannon again.” I’m so thankful that you are His tool!

  11. Diane says:

    This story is so wonderful. My daughter is taking off(!) and I really need His hand to trust for her. I don’t have a blog, but hers is:

  12. Diane says:

    Wonderful post Shannon! I just finished posting “Every Step I Take” on my blog. What a beautiful metaphor for our walk with God. You are a gifted writer–and such an inspiration! Thanks for sharing your heart with all of us in blog-dom!

  13. mother of two says:

    Beautifully written. Hope you don’t mind… I am going to put a link to this entry in my blog. It’s so inspiring and a reminder that God walks with us in good and in bad times.

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