Death of a Spouse Faith Featured Journal

You have to crawl to walk and walk to run to be successful

Written by Dana Hurst

A note of encouragement from someone I look up to very much, my brother. This has resonated with me all week as I look to what is next. It brings me back to my first child. Her ability has been to always exceed her younger brother in all that she does. She does it first, faster and quicker. She crawled at 6 months, walked a little before a year and soon later ran to explore hunting and golfing with her daddy.

My second, not so much. He didn’t move for a year. I remember looking at David with worry. Is there something wrong with my son? He isn’t moving. David’s simple answer, “No.  “You just need to put him down, Dana and you will be surprised what he can do.”

Days after a boot camp of learning to crawl, and me learning to let go, he was finally moving. He went from crawling to walking in only a few days, running soon after and hasn’t stopped.

Both kids, different times, different starts, different ends, crawled, walked and later ran. The past few months I have prayed for God’s will in my life. Two weeks ago, I made a commitment to spend each morning working on writing. It is a desire to one day turn our story into a book, it is a passion to connect with others.  I don’t believe I have the answers, I just have the journey.  I made the commitment. I planned to spend a few hours each morning, connecting with others, working through ideas, and writing.   Key word – I – not God’s key word. My plan was quickly cut short. When I say quickly, I mean that first day. I wasn’t crawling, walking or running towards God’s will, I was standing still – motionless and fearful.


Recognition set in on the reality of the emotions that would be faced and the feelings that I had not been honest about. Those dare not touch grieving feelings. My writing turned to reading where the truth comes for me, it is a safe place, the Bible. I wanted to close my eyes, flip the pages and just point to a verse and say, OK what do you have to say God? Didn’t want to set myself up for failure – don’t have much faith in the pointing method:).  So I decided to be a little more methodical about it and just started with Matthew. The opening of the new testament. I will be honest, I am not a good retainer of information. No matter how many bible studies, devotions, sermons I do, each time I spend time in the bible it is like starting on day one. And so it began, my writing turned to reading, reading to studying, studying to mediation and my writing?? Well, my writing turned to letters…letters to David. 

I continue to learn how you don’t need to search for God, or his answers. They are right there. After a long conversation of encouragement from my brother, he finished with the words “Dana, you have to crawl before you walk and walk before you run……….. to be successful.”

Of course, it couldn’t have been more fitting for the sermon to be on God’s will today. Sometimes I have to chuckle at the perfect timing of God. As I sat there thinking about crawling, to walking, walking to running, ( I tend to obsess over a scripture or quote:), I noticed a college student  standing a few rows over during the worship.  His hands up, eyes closed, joy radiating in his heart, he was running; running towards Christ.  Where was I? I want to run – run towards my faith. I want to feel what he was feeling. 

My second child – I want to learn his way. I want to say I am ready. And I do not want to wait to learn, know, do or be. When my second was ready, there was no stopping him.  As a mother, I didn’t need my son to crawl. I wanted him too. God doesn’t need us to fulfill his purpose. He wants us to. 

Dear David, 

You gained another friend in Heaven today. Did she tell you? The kids and I are doing well. I think she did, because minutes after she passed, it rained and rained. I found out later from her daughter, that before she passed they asked her to tell you hello. That we are OK. I spent time with Tricia a few weeks before her passing. I kept thinking, she is going to see you soon. I was secretly jealous of the beauty that awaited her in heaven and the connection she would make with you. Thank you for the confirmation of the rain. We love you. Parker asks about you constantly. The idea of permanency hasn’t set in to him. I tell him that even though we can’t see you, you hear us. I am thankful he prays to God about it. He asks God daily that you are healthy in heaven. Audrey, asks today if she could call you in heaven. Had to explain technology isn’t that quite advanced.  She doesn’t understand now, but she will one day and be stronger because of this. What is heaven like?  Is there really that feeling of unconditional love? I do wonder if you miss us with all that unconditional love up there. Parker wants a castle ( superhero one) that leads to heaven. Audrey explained that she believes heaven is around us, we just can’t see it yet. God is good. We can’t complain about the goodness he has put in our lives. He speaks through so many in our lives. Just know we love you…. ……… and we are taking your advice…..we are moving forward with you in our hearts. 

Love, Dana

About the author

Dana Hurst

Dana’s bio is coming soon. Read more about her at


  • Thank you for sharing that intimate letter my dear cousin . Always amazed! I love Ryan’s advice. I say baby steps for myself. Why rush ?i believe that is my hugest , or one I my hugest, defects . Always rushing. When I slow down and give my heart time to catch up with my head, well the answers do come to me. I certainly know who is giving me those answers.
    Love you Dana! Please give the kids lots if hugs and kisses from Ed, Eleanor, and I !

  • Thank you for sharing your beautiful letter. I have followed your story nag have been so encouraged by your faith and ability to see the good in all situations. We overcome by the blood of the Lamb and the word of our testimony and you are an overcomer! As I was reading this, I felt that you saw picking up the Bible and starting to read and it feeling like starting over as a bad thing. I am the same way. I do not retain it well. But God showed me that this is a gift! Every time I open the Word I am open to new revelation and can see the same words, yet have new meaning every time! Thank you for sharing your heart. You are truly an inspiration!

  • I feel like you and I have been long lost friends. I am from North Platte Ne. I have followed every step with you. You are an Amazing gift to all of us. You so openly share your faith,your children,and mostly the love that was (is) and always will be all around you because, David lives on in each of you. God is Great!!!

  • Dana as I too have traveled this journey of Jim now being gone now 8 months I have learned the comfort of prayer and trust Gods love to give me peace when I think Im falling apart with so many decisions to make. I can only say that each day every hour and each moment God gives me a Blessing to know that he will walk or carry me through this journey and I know Jim is in a beautiful place with other family and friends,and that gives me comfort and peace. God Bless you and God is with us. Love.

  • We are blessed because you continue to write & share. Please know I treasure your thoughts & words. They really do help us all to realize the hear and now & look forward to seeing our loved ones later on. You bring it all to life in a special way. Thanks again Dana, you brought tears to my eyes but tears of joy & feeling blessed to know you.

  • Dana,
    As I looked at Parker’s huge smile yesterday as he passed by the window and saw you, it made me realize what an incredible mother you are. It’s written all over his face. And Audrey is so affectionate. It shows she is being loved so well at home.
    Your writing is beautiful and expressive. You have such a gift. God blesses those that use the gifts He gives them. Your gift of writing is blessing others. You writing is your ministry. I’m so proud of you. I know David is incredibly proud of you.
    Love, Claire