Being your average southern girl, I was brought up in the Baptist church. Sunday mornings consisted of church pews, hymns, and a whole lot of hallelujah. There were at least three Bibles easily accessible from any point in the house at all times. My grandparents even had a room in their home that was dubbed “Jesus’ Room”. Being anything other than a child of God was not an option.

Sometime in high school, I decided that a child of God I was not. I spent years running from Him, somehow deciding the darkness in my life was His fault and if He would let these things happen to me, then He wasn’t the God I had been taught He was. I ignored every sign. Any time I felt His presence I turned away. I fought Him with everything I had. I denounced Him, I blamed Him, and somehow I convinced myself I didn’t need Him. 

A couple of years later, things started happening in my life. His presence in my life became so loud I couldn’t ignore it anymore. He was making it evident to me that no matter how long I had run or how hard I fought against Him, He never left me. I began to open myself up, but it wasn’t until I found out I was pregnant with my first that I admitted to myself I did, in fact, need Him. 

I prayed for Him to find me worthy enough to bless me with the task of being this baby’s mama for months. He did, and I swore I would spend the rest of my life making it up to Him for all of the running I’ve done. I’m doing everything I can to make good on the promise. 

I am living proof of His word, I see that now. I loved you at your darkest (Romans 5:8) is what He had essentially been screaming at me for years. Fortunately for me, my God is a forgiving God. He waited patiently for me to realize what He knew all along, and when I did, instead of punishing me, He showered me with all of the love and grace in the world. He could have turned His back on me like I did to Him, but instead He blessed me with the greatest gifts known to man: my children. 

Becoming a mama made me believe in miracles again. 

Becoming a mama forced my eyes open to the light my hurting heart had been refusing to see. 

Becoming a mama brought me back to God. 

Shelbie Tanner

I’m a full time bookkeeper, but my favorite “job” is being Mama to my sons. I have a love for all things personalized, early morning cuddles, and way too many sweets. Writing is my favorite way to talk about how much I love motherhood and my hope is that the things I write will resonate with other moms.