Never Assume You Know!

“Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He will give you the desires and secret petitions of your heart.” – Psalm 37:4 (amplified)

Today I am a 35 year old widow.  Back in December 2005, I moved our home office to another room in the house, emptying out the existing office completely.  I was acting in faith that my husband and I were going to be blessed by God with a new addition to our family.  Family members were already gathering baby furniture from their storage units, attics, and garages, to pass along to use.  I spent every opportunity I had online researching as much health information I could find.  I wanted to get myself as healthy as possible before I got pregnant.  It’s amazing what all you can give up or what you can take in when life is no longer just about you.  I was almost completely off of coffee by the end of December, soy became an absolute no-no, and I had formed a new love for sweet potatoes – minus all the butter and sugar of course!

Around the third week of the month, Warren came running down the stairs, fresh out of the shower and sporting only a towel.  I looked up from where I was sitting on the couch, but before I could mention the water still dripping from him he began to share his thoughts with great enthusiasm.

Up until this point in time we were just too busy to entertain the thought of expanding our family.  There were a lot of obstacles with life on the road.  One major hurdle was the fact that we wanted to keep our kids home as much as possible for at least the first five years of their lives.  We wanted our children to grasp the importance of home and having a home church to be committed to.  After nine and half years of marriage, and much prayer, our hearts began to dream about parenthood.

Here’s a song that friends of our played that God used to nudge us along..

As Warren bounced his dripping self down the stairs he announced with excitement, “I’ve got it!”  “You’ve got what?”  I asked.  “I have our little girls name.”  I was amused by this because I wasn’t even pregnant.  I decided to ask a very logical question.  “That’s nice honey, but what if God gives us a boy?”  Warren’s reply took me by surprise!  With absoluteness in his tone he said, “Nope!  We are having a girl and I have her name.  Do you want to hear it?”  I will be honest, this is where I braced myself because I never knew what he could come up with.  “Yes I want to hear it”, I said in response.  He then went on to explain how he was in the shower thinking about the name Moriah.  Moriah is the name friends of ours had just given their new baby girl.  He told me how he loved my name but knew from other conversations that neither one of use wanted a Warren or Shannan “Junior”, so he took the two names, Shannan and Moriah, and combined them.  “Shariah is her name.”  I was absolutely floored!  I was certain I was not going to like his first thoughts in the naming process, but I LOVED it!

I didn’t know what to make of this conversation or the empty room at the top of the stairs when Warren was killed the beginning of January, 2006.  The room remained a lump in the back of my throat each time I passed by it, but the name made complete sense just a few days after Warren’s death.

After all the reporters were done with their interviews and the local law enforcers made their stance clear, once all the stuff was off our tour bus and loaded into a trailer, we were ready to head home to Nashville so we could catch our flight to Canada to prepare for the funeral.  Canada is where all of Warren’s family is and the place where he now rests.

We had agreed to stay in the small town in South Carolina until noon in order to finish talking over a few things with the police.*  We were saddened by the outcome of that delay, but what did transpire at ten o’clock that morning has been what I call a God hug in the midst of overwhelming chaos.

There was a tap on the door as a lady entered the pastor’s home where myself and the rest of my ministry team had been staying.  She was from the church* where we were scheduled to minister the morning following Warren’s death.  In her hands was a long white box.  She set the box on the table and began to speak as she opened it.

“My mom has been designing and making porcelain dolls for a while now.  She pours the molds, paints them, and makes the clothes specific for each one.  This doll happens to be one that has won a first place blue ribbon, and she would like you to have it.”

When I looked into the box, there was the most beautiful baby girl dressed all in pink with white ruffles.  I began to cry and said, “I know her name!”  “Her name is Shariah.”

God spoke in an audible voice to my Baptist raise husband just forty days before he entered heaven.  As Warren lay awake with worry over all the changes about to take place, God spoke to him.  He said, “Don’t worry.  I’ve got it all figured out.”

Why do I share this story with you after all of this time?  The answer has two parts.

1.  I had tucked away any thoughts of becoming a mom simply because it was too painful to think about, but my heart is awake now and I will no longer shove my desires aside.  I love “Shariah”, but I still dream of the day when I will no longer have to borrow families because I will have one of my own.  I am staying balanced in my desire, though, and will not make future decisions on these emotions alone.

2.  Never assume you can figure God out.  He does not make sense to our human minds, but we can rest in the absolute fact that God sure does have every tiny little detail is in His care.  Including having a perfect, blue ribbon winning, baby girl ready to place in my arms.  Warren was right…

She has green eyes just like me 🙂

“I wait for the Lord, I expectantly wait, and in His word do I hope.” – Psalm 130:5


2011, Keeping it real!

*Jeremiah 29:11-14

*I want to thank Pastor Rodney Lindsay, his wife Debbie, and the congregation of Calvary Church of The Nazarene for all they did for me, Warren’s family, and the entire P3 ministry team during such a difficult time.  You have never been forgotten and you are all greatly loved.  Thank You!

*Warren Parker, Memorial Footage

I Love That I Serve The Almighty God Who Cannot Be Figured Out By Man!


  1. Adam G said,

    09/07/2011 at 11:50

    this is quite possibly the best blog post you have EVER had. God’s speed and much love to you my sister-from-another-mother.


  2. chrisadsit said,

    09/07/2011 at 11:50

    Shannan, you are gifted in making me laugh and making my eyes sweat, all within the same post! Thanks for lifting my thoughts once again to our “good-but-not-safe” God. His ways are higher our ways, inscrutable, wild, yet always perfect!

    • 09/07/2011 at 11:50

      Your words and friendship inspire me Chris. If we are truly honest, we wouldn’t want God any other way!

  3. Brandon said,

    09/07/2011 at 11:50

    I agree with Adam, this is the BEST blog I have read. It is amazing to me how your life stories touch us all. Thanks for sharing your stories and may we all learn from them.


    • 09/07/2011 at 11:50

      Thank You Brandon! Since our “bubbles” have crossed paths you have encouraged me in many ways. Thank you for all you do for me and for so many others.

  4. Neal Krulik said,

    09/07/2011 at 11:50

    Well Shannan, I’m teary eyed….. This spoke to me deeply….. I’ve been seeking more than ever for Gods voice…. Surrendering to whatever He wants….. Thank you for sharing this incredible defining moment of your character and journey.

    Be Blessed


    • 09/07/2011 at 11:50

      I appreciate you Neal. I know you can, in your own personal way, relate to so many of the emotions I write about.. I too am seeking Him more than ever and praying for strength for the journey. We are promised peace and God’s leading when we seek Him with our whole heart. Hang in there my friend. We are richly blessed!

  5. 09/07/2011 at 11:50

    This is very, very touching.

    Did you ever read the book, “Jewels,” or see the made-for-TV movie? It is so good. It’s about a woman who had several loves and they were all equally wonderful. She also had four beautiful children after… well, I can’t give away the entire story. You should see it for yourself. 🙂

    If you ever have children, they will be beautiful, and this is my wish for you.

    • 09/07/2011 at 11:50

      Kelly, I have not read that book but it seems like someone told me about it not too long ago. I will have to write that book down on my list to read, or maybe see the movie first 🙂 Thank you for the sweet wishes!

  6. 09/07/2011 at 11:50

    Thank you for sharing such a challenging & replanting time in your life. I pray God overwhelms you with giving you the desires of your heart.

    • 09/07/2011 at 11:50

      Thank you for your prayers! I hold God to His promises 🙂 I don’t believe it is a coincidence that Psalm 37:4 was one of my favorite verses as a small child, along with John 14:14.

  7. Tanya said,

    09/07/2011 at 11:50

    WOW I am at working reading this and about to cry!! Amazing thank you for being so real and vulnerable.

    Love you girl,

    • 09/07/2011 at 11:50

      Hey Tanya, I sure didn’t mean to make you cry. Love you my sweet friend!

  8. robblair said,

    09/07/2011 at 11:50

    Beautiful thoughts as always, my eyes aren’t leaking, really, I just have something in both of them. When that day comes, you will be a great mom.

    • 09/07/2011 at 11:50

      Thanks Rob. You’ve been a great encouragement over these past five years. I know you’ve prayed me through a lot!

  9. Tracey Paris said,

    09/08/2011 at 11:50

    wow…holding tight to Gods promise! Thank you for sharing a wonderful story! As the tears flow I pray “May you be blessed always!”
    Love and miss you!

  10. 10/09/2015 at 11:50

    […] we could hold a little one all our own.  For some reason Warren was pretty sure God would give us a girl.  In the midst of all the personal family plans we’d even begun the process of hiring a […]

  11. Chrystie Meredith Singleton said,

    08/03/2016 at 11:50

    Wow…I am touched by what you have written.

    • 08/03/2016 at 11:50

      Thank you, Chrystie. I sincerely appreciate you taking a moment to comment.

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