A Letter To My Future, To My Love – Thank you for catching the stick!

The words bellow are a summary of encounters and experiences.  This is not a reflection of, nor is this directed to any one person, except for “My Future, My Love”.  
She’s not aggressive , so she quietly waits and watches to see who will pursue, who will not drop the stick.

May I rise above being dumb as sheep to soar with the wisdom of the winged.

 We are often compared to sheep in the scriptures.  Sheep need a Shepherd because, well frankly, they are not very bright.  If they do not have constant watch they will be devoured for sure.  They will either end up as dinner for their predator, they will kill themselves by falling over and not being able to get back up, or they can possibly have their brains taken over by bugs.  It’s true – Shoo Fly, Don’t Bother Me!  Sheep need the constant watch and care of their shepherd.  Thankfully, God also tells us that if we wait and trust in Him we will soar like the eagle.  Getting those strong wings is a tough process, but there’s even more that I’ve recently learned about this beautiful mighty bird.  They are wise!

How an eagle finds her for-life-mate.

(As told by the Wintu Tribal Elders of California)
“When it comes time for the female Eagle to choose her mate, she prepares herself for many suitors.  And many come before her.  She looks them over quite well and then picks one to fly with for a while.

If she likes the way he flies she finds a small stick, picks it up and flies high with it.  At some point she will drop the stick to see if the male can catch it.  If he does, then she finds a larger stick and flies with it much higher this time.  Each time the male catches the sticks, she continues to pick up larger and larger sticks.  When she finds the largest heaviest stick that she herself can carry, the stick is at this point almost the size of a small log!  But she can still fly very high with this large stick.

At any time in this process, if the male fails to catch the stick, she flies away from him as her signal that the test is now over.  She begins her search all over again.  And when she again finds a male she is interested in, she starts testing him in the exact same way.  And she will continue this “testing” until she finds the male Eagle who can catch all the sticks.  And when she does, she chooses him, and will mate with him for life. 

One of the reasons for this test is that at some point they will build a nest together high up and will then have their Eaglettes.  When the babies begin to learn to fly, they sometimes fall instead.  It is then that the male must catch his young.  And he does!”*

Woman's Hand Writing

A Letter To My Future, To My Love,

Dear Love,

There have been a few times that I could have remarried by now, but believe me, this is not said with a voice of arrogance.  The term, ”It’s a jungle out there” is no understatement.  To be sure, not all those I’ve met have been toilsome.   I have met some amazing people, but they simply were not you.

Now, back to ”It’s a jungle out there”.  I have met some real jerks!  So many times I wished you were by my side to protect me, but our God is good, He has kept me safe for you.  I will spare you great detail, but if you don’t mind, I’d like to sum up my experiences with a few words to those to whom this should apply.

To those who have dropped the stick or were never asked to pick it up to begin with, let me make myself very clear.

Unless you are under heavy lights about to do a photo shoot, Yes, I do mind if you wear eyeliner!  If you’re under investigation for your wife’s “suicide”, and if you practice out-of-body journey’s or levitation, we are not a match.  I’m not ok with being a secret, and to be clear, I cannot rescue you.  If you run when things do not go the way you’ve played it out in your head, I will let you run.  Mind reading is not possible and trying to guess what expectation I am to live up to is exhausting, not to mention impossible.  Also, If you say you do not want to grow up, I will run as fast as I can from you.

If I hear the words, “You’re too good for me” with a pitiful downward gaze, I’ve come to realize, you’re probably right.  You know you better than anyone else and you know what other secret life you are living.  I will heed your warning.  Anything kept hidden is a bomb waiting to go off.  Let me assure you, when I hear the words “I just wish you would let me do you” I am NOT flattered!  Are you kidding me!  Really?  Does that line really work?  It may be endearing to some, but it is an insult to my character, and extremely selfish on your part.

Regarding the classic and my all-time favorite, if “God told you to tell me” something that involved me, then He would have told me also.  God does not gossip.  If God has not told me the same thing, you are free to move on. 

You see Love, It truly is a jungle out there!  I’d like to think I’m not completely naive, though I would prefer to remain so on some things.  Being thrust into the dating world again, and standing face-to-face with wolves wrapped in human skin, has left me astonished.  What’s even more frustrating is the fact that all but one of the examples above were from those claiming to be a follower of Christ.  I wish I could promise you perfection on my part, I am far from having it all together, but to purposefully disregard the standards that we claim to believe, or to expect from others what we ourselves are not willing to give, is hypocrisy.  It’s living a lie.  Though, I am thankful for the encounters.  They’ve allowed me to appreciate you more. 

For the very reasons stated above, I’ve chosen not to date all that much.  Some have told me that I’m way too picky.  Maybe so, but I feel I’ve had to be.  Though, I prefer to call myself selective.  I think I should choose wisely who I spend precious time with, especially when you are the one that’s always on my mind. 

True, I was married for 9 1/2 years to a good man.  Warren was not perfect and I won’t pretend either of us were, but because of his life and experiencing his sudden death, I can love you better today.   I promise you, you are never expected to measure up to him.  You are unique and stand alone.  You have your own strengths and I honor them.  Besides, I have been praying for God to give me eyes for you only!  As my dear friend,Kimberly Wyse, so sweetly stated, “Perfection isn’t the goal – just appreciation.” 

I know that God’s ways are so much sweeter than anything I can dream up, so I will be content to trust Him as I wait for you.  I won’t give in, or settle for less than the desire God has placed in my heart.  I won’t settle for less than you.  With God’s protection and grace, I promise not to surrender my lonely season for a temporary high.  I do not want to rob God from the joy of blessing us.  I don’t want to rob you, my love, my Partner in life, of the assurance that you are worth more to me than to be a simple temporary emotional fix.  You are worth waiting for and deserve someone you can trust.

Oh how I long for the day I can look into your eyes and whisper my promise to you, “I do” because I do cherish you already.  I do promise my devotion to our God and to you – with all my heart.  Thank you for catching the stick!”

So My Future, My Love,
I offer you an I.O.U. me.
~Sincerely and Already Yours, Shannan
From the frailty of the sheep to the wisdom of the winged, ”She prepares herself for many suitors”, but only one will she give herself to.
So yes, I could have remarried by now, if I were willing to settle for the bad boy, the emotionally absent, the one needing a cover for another life, or simply for someone who I do not love with the deep devoted love a wife should have for her husband.  Am I too picky?  Maybe to some, but I am willing to bet that my future will be glad that I am so picky today.
What I am sure of is that God holds my future, so it is secure.  I will live out whatever today brings with joy, and like the wise eagle, I will prepare myself for my dreams of what tomorrow might hold.  Until tomorrow unfolds itself, I will choose contentment, for I know Who holds it.
Dumb as sheep or wise as the winged?  It’s a choice.
“she quietly waits and watches”
Open Scroll
*Kerry Shook – From Checkmate to Soulmate, video time marker 9:30-12:59, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ghXBQSj5uT8
A big thank you to my dearest of friends, Kimberly and Lori.  Thank you for walking through life with me, for all the laughter and tears we’ve shared, and thank you for helping me finish this monstrous writing.  I love you dearly my forever friends!


  1. Marion Grove said,

    03/07/2014 at 11:50

    For sure you are doing the right thing and I respect you for your total devotion to God and His standards. God will grant you the desires of your heart and especially when you honour Him in all things. Blessings on you while you are in this waiting journey!!!

    • 03/07/2014 at 11:50

      Thanks so much for your encouragement and believing with me, Marion. I don’t know how my desire(s) will be packaged, but I thank God for giving me a desire and trust He will reveal all in His time.

  2. kimberlywyse said,

    03/07/2014 at 11:50

    Great post! I’ve loved walking through this journey with you, although I pray often for God to release you from “the jungle” and bring you into a time of rest and joy in the marriage He’s preparing for you. I can’t wait to celebrate with you on that day. In the meantime, I applaud you for recognizing a frog for what it is and not letting your heart be stolen by a counterfeit!

    • 03/07/2014 at 11:50

      And I appreciate you helping me to recognize those full-of-bull frogs! Thank you for your prayers and for often being a voice of hope in doubt.

  3. prit4099 said,

    03/18/2014 at 11:50

    Shannan – As I sit hear listening to KLOVE, drinking my morning smoothie & coffee, I can’t help but to respond to this post. There is no doubt that you will find your stick catcher. However, please do not run anyone away because he is willing to admit that you are good for him. I would never marry or date anyone that I did not think was good for me. On the flip side, he needs to be just as good for you. Now, I do agree with you, if he states “you are too good for me”, run… One more piece of advice: Do not compare any of us to the other. We are all unique with special character and character flaws. Keep your head up as the bird you are looking for is already flying high.

    • 03/27/2014 at 11:50

      Brandon, Thank you so much for taking the time to share your thoughts and advice. I agree 100% with all you’ve said. I hope that my words did not sound harsh or judgmental. They were not written from anger. I do want someone who thinks I’m good for them, but not one who wants me to be the good for both of us. Does that make sense? It takes both being good for each other. I hope that I can be a strength, and in turn, know that on my not so strong days I will have a partner in life who is ready to be strong arms for me also. I try my best not to compare. Just as I reassured “My Future” of his uniqueness and promised not to compare him to Warren, I believe each of us possess special characteristics that are custom fit – one of a kind. Just as there was only one Warren, there will only be one Shannan, and there will only be one Brandon. All diamonds in my book.

      I found your words kind. Thank you for taking the time to breathe hope into this life as you sip your coffee and drink your smoothie. I’m guessing strawberry banana? 🙂

  4. Tom Wilson said,

    03/29/2015 at 11:50

    Shannan, that was wonderful. Thank you for being vulnerable and transparent. You are wise beyond your years.

    • 04/02/2015 at 11:50

      Thanks so much, Tom. I sat here this morning talking with God about how little I know. Your words are a humbly received compliment.

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