how to survive your husband’s mission trip (or business trip)

A post I wrote a few weeks ago when my husband was in Peru for a 10-day mission trip. For obvious (security) reasons, I’m just now posting it. I hope it’s helpful. And, hey, I did survive that trip. The two things that were MOST crucial were (1) my mom coming to visit and help out for the second half of his absence (just when I felt like I might pull my hair out, or someone’s hair out) and (2) LOTS of grace extended to me and the girls by Jesus – good sleeping, no illness, presence of mind to take breaks when I/they needed them.


Two years ago, my husband led his first mission trip to India. Our twin daughters were 18-months-old, and they were just rounding the bend of that quite difficult “terrible two’s” stage that lasted for quite too long. Needless to say, the ten days he was across the world serving God in vibrant, spiritually energizing ways, I was pulling my hair out exhausted and worn out from solo-parenting these girls. He returned home, and as he shared stories of seeing God work in incredible ways, I grew increasingly resentful and jealous. I told him in bitter jest that I would not allow him to go on another mission trip until our daughters were in school full-time.

Three days ago he left for Peru for another mission trip. And you know what? This time around it’s been so much better. I have taken a few pages out of the books of my amazing Navy wife friends who are called upon to endure MONTHS of deployments, sometimes at little more than a few weeks’ notice. As I have seen them (you) endure these long days and weeks and months without your husband, I have learned a few tips that I tried to implement this time around. I share them in hopes of encouraging you who may be in the same boat.

  1. Say yes to help. Myriads of people in your community really want to help you. If they offer, take them up on it. Say “yes”! Write their names down; call them when a need arises. We cannot do this alone. Just like it will take an entire team to do the missions work my husband is engaged in, it will take a team (of your “village”) to help sustain you while you await his return.
  2. Plan fun activities. I’ve tried to do things we do not usually do, and to plan one main fun activity each day. Like going swimming; eating ice cream; having a sleepover with friends. This has made the days pass more quickly for them and for me.
  3. Be especially intentional and attentive. It’s not just hard on me – it’s also hard on my kiddos not to have Daddy around to break up their days. So I’m trying to stretch myself and do more spontaneous play than I usually do – and if the dishes don’t get washed by the end of the day, no big deal. There’s always tomorrow … !
  4. Join with them in prayer. I joined with the other wives of team members to pray for our husbands and their team. It was encouraging to lift up this team together and feel like we were a very real part of their missions work. It also helped to build camaraderie among us “left behind.”
  5. Stock up on supplies. Day one (when we had the most energy), we went to the grocery store and loaded our cart with lots of “happy food.” Meaning, ice cream and chocolate syrup and frozen meals and sugary snacks we don’t usually buy. I put a few beverages of choice in the cart, and we went off on our merry way into the week ahead.
  6. Remember that Jesus is my provision as much as he is my husband’s provision. Part of God providing for Seth to go on this mission trip is an implicit promise that he will also provide for me as I’m at home alone with our girls. I also have an opportunity to trust God more fully and to watch him show up in surprising ways for me.

how story reveals God

photo credit:

What is it about a good story that draws you in? Isn’t it the unfolding plot, the developing characters, a sense of movement and intrigue and the yet unknown? Do you live into the story that is your life? Do you view your life as story? And what kind of story is your life telling?

Enter last Thursday’s “To Be Told” conference taught by Dan Allender. Ironically, I hardly have words for how powerful it was. This conference, in this moment of my story, illuminated my own story and reminded me of the power of the story of a life. Of my life. Of your life. We are all living a story. But do you know your story? And what story is your life telling about God? And how are you telling your story and being an engaged presence to listen to the stories of others? These opening questions were the invitation to a conference I hope to be processing for the rest of my life. For that’s the thing with the stories that are our lives – they never end. There is no resolution this side of eternity, simply respites and hints of the Grand Resolution to come, and chapters that begin and end.

Story reveals the heart of God. The best stories always do. That’s what I love about the Harry Potter books, for example. There’s the undeniable themes of light versus darkness, and times when darkness seems to have won. But then it doesn’t. Not ultimately, though darkness in the personification of He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named certainly takes many casualties down with him along the way.

Allender spoke into this connection between story and God’s revelation as he said:

We don’t know the heart of God outside of story, but we don’t know our story outside of God’s character.

What this says to me as a writer, counselor, wife, mom, daughter, sister, friend is that (1) I want to be a good listener to the stories of others. To look for and point out and worship alongside the revelation of God in the stories of my traveling companions. 

(2) I want to tell my story well. Which might mean, to tell my story. I hide from my story not because it’s “BIG” and “DARK” and “SCARY” but because it seems quite ordinary to me. Of course it does – it’s all I’ve ever known. I also often feel like compared to the stories of many clients I walk with and friends I journey beside, it does not reveal God as dramatically as theirs do. But that’s simply not true. There’s no comparison in this art of story-telling. The goal is story-telling. To tell your story. To know your story and tell it, and in telling your story, to know it better. And because we live in a world inhabited by the God of every story, knowing my story better will mean that I know the God of my story better. Similar to the way that listening to your story will also mean I know a different aspect of God in a deeper way, a part of God that he wrote specifically into your story and none other.

Intrigued? Let’s tell stories together. And I cannot recommend his book To Be Told or the accompanying conference highly enough. This will be the beginning of many posts on “story.”


Wisdom looks like love

Last weekend, I had the privilege of addressing a group of women at Grace Presbyterian Church in Lexington, Virginia, on the vast topic of “wisdom.” I’ve written a bit about that here, and I’m including a few more thoughts on the idea that transformed the way I’ve studied wisdom these past months. Oh, that it would change the way I LIVE out wisdom, too!


Since Jesus himself is the wisdom of God, looking at his life provides the definition of what wisdom looks like. At every turn, we see love. Jesus sought out the tax collector who was too short to see him and invited himself over to his home; he healed the woman who had been bleeding for years and took away her shame; he forgave the adulterous woman who was about to be stoned; he had compassion on the crowds and miraculously fed them; he loved us to the very extent of love – giving his own life on our behalf, becoming obedient to death itself so that we might live and be restored to God. Jesus was God incarnate, and since God is love, we could say that Jesus is love incarnate. So wisdom and love are inextricably connected. Love is the outflow of true wisdom that comes from God, flowing out of a heart depending on Jesus.

This really gets me. I can live in my head so much as a woman who loves words – reading them and writing them and pondering ideas. My profession as a counselor calls me to discuss wisdom and love outside of the actual situation where one is being challenged to love wisely, and so I can too often stop at the false conclusion that wise insight equals heart change. If you spent a week with me, you would see the gap between what I teach, how I counsel others, and the way I apply wisdom to my own relationships. Too often after giving marriage counsel to a couple in conflict, I come home and do the very things I warned the couple against. I interrupt before listening; get angry too quickly at petty differences; sulk and say “fine” when I’m really anything but; hold onto grudges instead of forgive. Same with parenting. I can explain to a friend that being calm will bring calm to her kids, but the minute my own kids get in the way of what I want (an uninterrupted shower? a peaceful Target trip? quiet in the mornings?), I erupt in anger and yell at them impatiently.

I’ve written a blog series entitled, “Confessions of an angry mom,” about how to bring anger under the control of the Holy Spirit through the power of the gospel of Jesus. And it has helped many others. But I still need these words for myself. I will never outgrow my need for wisdom. For I will always be drawn away from wise love by my foolish, selfish desires. Sin dwelling within me – the old self that died with Christ. And so preaching the good news about “Christ in me, the hope of glory” is essential to practicing wise love daily, being transformed by the One who is Wisdom rather than building up myself through my intellectual understanding of wisdom or analytical relational insights.

beach or desert: a matter of perspective

We had a beach day this morning. One of several we have been able to enjoy this summer now that our daughters are better able to enjoy sand-castle building and wave jumping (rather than sand-eating and rushing-too-far-into-the-ocean as they’ve done previously). It was perfect beach weather: 90 degrees, with a breeze coming off the ocean, hot but with the cold refreshing ocean to dip into as needed. And our girls had so much fun with the other family we met there, who have a teenage daughter whom they adore and who is SO great at playing with them. I even had a chance to read two whole chapters in the novel I brought (which before has been merely wishful thinking). It was fabulous. Like turning over a new page of the seasons of our family’s life, pun intended.

But then there was the walk back. And it felt like a desert because of the wide, wide beach. The sand we had all enjoyed playing with now felt hot and sticky and magnetic as we trudged the dozens of yards back to the boardwalk, and then to our car. The refreshing saltwater had dried out my skin, leaving a salty-sticky residue in its place. Beach flies had bitten my ankles. And there was all of our gear to haul back. The beach chairs, the snacks, the towels, buckets, shovels, even (yes) a portable/foldable potty for our potty training rock stars. And one of the girls began wailing. The. Whole. Way. Back.

I was annoyed until I realized that I felt the same way. I love the beach, but there reaches a point where all I really want is to be clean and dry and un-hot. And the only way to get there is trudging back through the sand, over the dunes, into the car, driving on the very long highway until we reach our house. In that long walk back, I felt like the beach turned into a desert. I couldn’t see the ocean; the breeze was nonexistent; miles upon miles (or so it felt) of nothing but sand stretched in front of me. And it could have been the desert, for all I knew.

The desert brings different feelings than a beach day. Connotations of scarcity, drought, survival, complaint, wandering all fit with the desert. And isn’t that how I choose to see life at times? With my “back to the ocean,” as it were, it feels like the desert. Nothing but sand and heat and miles of it stretching in front of you while your child wails and whines the complaint you feel in your own heart. All I had to do was turn around and remember the beautiful morning we had enjoyed there; to catch a glimpse of the crashing waves. To remember that even when it feels like a desert, it’s really a beach if I can see the bigger perspective.

Motherhood particularly challenges me in this way. So many desert moments to trudge through in a given day, week, month, year. But so many beautiful “beach” moments to savor and relish as well. If I have eyes to see, and if I ask God to help me see. His presence with me always transforms deserts into beaches. Because he is Life itself, and there is no scarcity in his presence. 


When Father’s Day is painful

Before I delve into this topic, let me begin with a disclamor: I was blessed to be raised by a Dad who loved me well as his daughter and cherished me and led me to Jesus over and over again and proudly gave me away to the man I married almost 7 years ago. This man has been a father for three years to our twin daughters, and I daily thank God that my girls have such a father to call, “Daddy.”

This isn’t a post about my pain, but it’s a post about the pain so many of you carry on this day. God calls us to bear one another’s burdens, and in my calling as a counselor and friend, I have heard your stories and I hurt for you today. And I wanted you to know that someone notices, sees, and acknowledges today’s pain.

Today may be painful because you’re grieving the father you never knew. The father you wish you had known, but whose absence leaves a hole in your heart and your life. A hole that you’ve tried to fill a thousand other ways but it always comes up short.

Your pain may be the absence of a father you knew and loved dearly and who is now gone. Whose death you grieve today most keenly. I’ve written about grief here, and I pray the God of all comfort will meet you in each avenue of sorrow you will walk through today as you know Him as Father and the ever-present one.

Or maybe the pain comes from a father who violated the protection and trust meant to be inherent in your relationship. Abuse of any sort – emotional, physical, or sexual – breaks boundaries established by God and leaves indelible pain, confusion, and deep wounds. Your journey feels long and hard and impossible and dark. You may not even be able to speak of what happened, and so you have to fake a “Happy Father’s Day” to the man who violated you and did what should not be done. And this only adds insult to injury. I hurt for you and with you, and if you need a safe place to talk about this, find a trusted friend or counselor or pastor and begin to share this pain. Speaking about such things feels as if it will multiply shame, but that’s the kingdom of darkness trying to keep you from coming into the light. When light shines in the darkness, the darkness cannot overcome it (John 1:5).

Then there are those of you who long to be fathers, and whether the delay is due to waiting for marriage or waiting through infertility, this day is a painful reminder of what you (or your spouse) are not yet.

Some of you have a combination of what I’ve mentioned already, and so the hurt is multi-faceted and often complicated grief. Such as grieving the death of an abusive father. Or a feeling of fear and dread as you watch your husband becoming abusive in ways your own father was to you. Or celebrating a wonderful father while wondering whether you or your husband will ever become one.

And then there’s the frustration of waiting for your husband to step up and be the kind of father you had or that you pray he would be for your children. Perhaps you found yourself reading the greeting cards and wishing they were actually true. You feel disappointed and you wonder if and when he’ll ever change.

As you grieve today, I want you to know that you’re not grieving in silence and you’re not grieving alone. Not only do I (and many, many others) acknowledge your pain, but we want to walk with you through it. And even if today passes without any other acknowledgement of the burden you carry, there is One who sees. Who meets you even now, carries your grief for you; atones for the sin committed against you; is the perfect and present Father you long for or miss or never had. He is the one who met a slave-woman and her son when they’d been cruelly abandoned by her mistress and were languishing in the desert, expecting to die. Hagar’s name for this God in Genesis 16:13?

You are the God who sees me.

On this day when you will see all of the Facebook and Instagram posts celebrating fathers and painting pictures of beautiful Pinterest-worthy brunches and picnics and barbecues; on this day when you will feel as if you are not seen or known; take comfort that there is a God who sees you. Who sees your pain and your grief and your brokenness. He sees you, and his seeing brings healing, comfort, and light into darkness. I can’t promise the pain will be less, but I know a God who promises his presence with his people in times of distress. And he is the one from whom all the best earthly fathers derive their name. He is the one Paul speaks of in 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 –

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies
and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction …

And here’s one last thought. All of the images of perfect families with perfect fathers you’ll see today through posted pictures, at church or the brunch restaurant or your next-door neighbors – well, they’re not as perfect as they seem either. And in fact they could be well-constructed masks to cover pain that might be more similar to yours than you know. Take courage to tell your story, whether beginning today or tomorrow; whether with one friend or in a more public sphere; whether in person or email or a blog. Your story will remind others that they, too, do not grieve alone. And you may even be able to put words to what someone else could never express until they read or hear what’s on your heart.

Take Ten for Thanksgiving

Fall PumpkinsAs I looked up the word “thankful” and its synonym “grateful” in the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, I thought about how I often throw those words around – particularly at this time of year – with no thought to what they actually mean. Hence the dictionary search. As I came across this compilation of definitions, what I have reason to be thankful for became more clear, too. And why I am not more thankful is a sad commentary for my lack of eyes to see, really see, all that surrounds me. I’m going to ask you to do something with me today. In between preparations for the big feast, or after your belly is full from feasting, take ten minutes to sit down and think of ten things for which to be thankful. (Thankfulness is a great natural antidote to the anger I’ve been writing about, too, by the way. An angry heart and a grateful heart rarely coexist at the same time.)

First, the definition:

  • conscious of benefit received
  • appreciative of benefits received
  • affording pleasure or contentment
  • pleasing by reason of comfort supplied or discomfort alleviated
  • well pleased, glad

Isn’t that eye-opening? Hopefully, that begins to get you thinking about some items for your thankful list. I wanted to take this even further. Thanksgiving for me as a Christian isn’t merely having warm feelings of general goodwill and thanks for life in general. Thanksgiving has an object: the Creator and Giver of all good things. Thanksgiving is to be part of my life as someone in relationship with God. One verse I found summarized Christian Thanksgiving quite concisely:

Psalm 75:1 – “We give thanks to you, O God;

We give thanks, for your name is near.

We recount your wondrous deeds.”

In those three lines, the writer of this ancient worship hymn instructs me about God-oriented giving of thanks.

  • “Giving thanks” is an action – a choice and a decision.
  • “We” – not merely individual, but corporate. Something we do in community, with our community, and on behalf of our community.
  • the direction of my thanks – God! Seems simple but often I find myself not thanking God directly. Or really attributing something I’m enjoying to another source, like my great ingenuity in thinking of how to manage my day to find some peace and quiet, my self-sufficiency, my bank account, etc. The ultimate source behind all of this is God. And as a Christian, I am asked to go straight to The Source with my thanks. This will help my heart keep worshiping.
  • the why of giving thanks – “for your name is near.” God himself is evident all around me, and he is present with me and within me by the Spirit. Who he is – his character – is very near to me. If I have eyes to see!
  • how to give thanks – remembering his wondrous deeds. This is a specific recounting of what God has done, with an implication of a sense of wonder and awe at the God who has done these deeds.

Here are a few of my “ten” when I sat down to recount specific thanks to God. I’d love to hear a few of yours, too!

  1. The beauty of barren branches against a wintry blue sky
  2. God bringing together a Carolina girl and a Jersey boy in Philadelphia to marry, raise twin daughters, and expand one another’s cultural experiences
  3. Parents who love God, Seth, me, and our daughters – on both sides
  4. Daughters who are teaching me how to love more fully
  5. Faith awakened at a young age with which to receive God’s greatest gift of grace in Christ
  6. A heavenly Father who’s known me from the beginning of time and pursued me with love

And I could go on. I hope that I will never stop. I’m about 300+ into Ann Voskamp’s “One Thousand Gifts” challenge. And you could just be beginning with your first ten! Read more at her blog here. And happy Thanksgiving!

awed by the moment and calmed by Jesus’ love

These are the two themes that I feel like God’s been teaching me about – much of it through observing our quickly growing almost-11-month-olds. They are crawling everywhere and into everything. Very curious about life! We love that although it makes our days much busier as well. The hardest part of the evening for them (and all of us) is that 4-7pm timeframe when it’s not yet bedtime and both naps are over for the day. And they begin fussing, which can quickly turn into crying and screaming inconsolably. Almost inconsolably. Some days they can be quieted by something quite simple, childish really (and they are babies, after all). We stumbled upon it accidentally when we started singing to them the first song that came to mind, “Jesus Loves Me.” Most of the time, this will calm Lucia and Alethia. Or at least give a few minutes’ reprieve from the screaming. The words and the melody familiar to them because it has been sung over them by parents, grandparents, friends, has a quieting effect on them. As I noticed this “magic song,” it made me pray for them that they would always be quieted by Jesus’ love. Long after they would outgrow this song, would that the truth conveyed by this little childhood tune sink deep into their hearts! And as I prayed for them, I started by praying for my heart, too, that can be so easily tossed  to and fro by the ups and downs of a day or a month or a year or a season. In case it’s been awhile since you’ve sung that tune, here’s the main verse of that little ditty:

Jesus loves me

This I know

For the Bible tells me so

Little ones to Him belong [and aren’t we all “little ones” compared to God’s greatness?]

They are weak [oh, so aware of this for me!]

But He is strong.

Yes, Jesus loves me [repeat 3 x’s]

For the Bible tells me so.

My best friend’s daughter “sings” this tune by saying “Bible” when you say, “Jesus loves me.” Isn’t that adorable? And how much I have to learn! Truly we are to become like little children in order to know the great truths about our God and King.

As Seth and I move into this new phase of parenting children, training and discipline and instruction are topics we are earnestly seeking to learn about because we are aware of how much they are soaking up each day and how much they begin to be in need of parental guidance. We have begun watching an excellent parenting series by Paul Tripp (one of our counseling professors when we were in seminary), and he begins his series by discussing our need to provide our children with a God-saturated environment. By this he means that we are not only to teach our kids truths about God, but to give our children a sense of awe about God. Which, he points out, cannot happen if we ourselves are not in awe of God.

A book I’m currently reading is helping me to open my eyes to the awe of the moment, the richness of our great God who is present in each moment. And so many moments I skip by or pass over or endure with gritted teeth because I’m missing God. For all of you who can relate, I cannot recommend highly enough Ann Voskamp‘s book, “One Thousand Gifts.” The book itself is a gift to me who has trouble seeing what really matters. She echoes Tripp’s teaching as she writes:

“Every moment I live, I live bowed to something. And if I don’t see God, I’ll bow down before everything else. … How I want to see the weight of glory break my thick scales, the weight of glory smash the chains of desperate materialism, split the numbing shell of deadening entertainment, bust up the ice of catatonic hearts. I want to see God …”

Voskamp writes about how hurry is the enemy of awe, that “Hurry always empties a soul. … I only live the full life when I live fully in the moment. … The fast have spiritually slow hearts.” How this convicts me, who prides myself on efficiency and races against the naptime clock to see how much I can possibly fit into those brief “free” hours of a day! Who, in trying to recruit my babies into my hurried lifestyle, causes exhaustion and stress for us both.

I have much to learn. I am thankful for this moment, this time when babies are sleeping to soak in these truths and ask for grace to keep doing so. If God is present everywhere and in every moment, I only must have eyes to see Him. Which I feel like I am only beginning to do.


I wanted to give a bit of an update after the last post. Yes, motherhood has felt particularly difficult over the past several weeks, but also YES, I have a God who is alive and who meets me in the midst of all of life’s struggles and provides even more than what I need. And my heart is refreshed and thankful today as I think about …

  • grace and mercies new every morning – and every moment – as I need them
  • the refreshment of a week with family – who reminded me what a delight Lucia & Alethia are to us
  • moments to relax on the beach without having to track down the girls (thank you, Gigi & Pops!!)
  • the infinite horizon of the ocean meeting the sky that is just a tiny picture of the infinite love of God for His people “O, the deep, deep love of Jesus … vast, unmeasured, boundless, free … rolling as a mighty ocean, in its fullness over me …” (lines from my favorite hymn)
  • a date with Seth in Charleston
  • the refreshment of God’s Word – recently decided to read through the book of James. Its practical wisdom has been just what I need in this season of life, from the book called the “Proverbs of the New Testament.”
  • a day to be with God’s people and worship and receive the bread & the wine … and rest (thanks to a longer nap from the twins)
  • friends who encourage, pray for me, remind me that I am not alone in the hard days (you know who you are – thank you!)
  • my husband who faithfully loves and cares for me and our daughters
  • our God who is always faithful and loving and merciful, unchanging though all else can seem like it has changed

September already!

There are many reasons why I can hardly believe that it’s September. Like so many of you, I’m asking, “Where did the summer go?” Yet unlike many of you, my answer is rather mundane: umm … it passed while I sat in a recliner observing the comings and goings of our Norfolk neighborhood, wondering how close I was to delivering these twins. There is some grief – that I couldn’t make it to Bryan & Megan’s wedding, that Seth & I only spent a couple days at the beach together (in contrast to last summer when we took full advantage of being only 30 minutes from the beach by going every Saturday), that my favorite of seasons is almost gone, that hanging out with friends and family was always in the same atmosphere: our house. Of course, I would say that it was all worth it – and certainly will be once we meet these daughters of ours.

I am certainly in a very different season of expectancy now. All of my self-given “projects” are over; leaving me to read and write and chat with friends. I feel like “circling the wagons,” in the sense of wanting to soak up each minute of time left when family time still consists of just Seth and me. We are as prepared as we can be, knowing full well that there is nothing that will quite prepare us for the chaotic joy that is ahead of us. I am not sleeping well at night because I can’t get comfortable, and then once I do, I inevitably wake 1-2 hours later and then can’t get back to sleep. I’m not too tired during the day, surprisingly, but I wish I could store up more sleep for the sleepless days & nights sure to come.

And there’s a hurricane coming through this weekend. Three people have told me that the low barometric pressure brought on by such a storm makes labor much more likely. There is some interesting research that seems to support this. And so now that I am at 34 weeks and now that we are in September and now that I feel like there’s really nothing left I need to do … I can’t help but wonder if this weekend (Labor Day weekend, incidentally) will be “the” weekend. Part of me is scared and part of me is excited. It’s similar to the way I’ve felt before each mission trip I’ve embarked upon (to Haiti, Mexico, Ireland, New Orleans): once preparations are completed and it’s the night before leaving, I have a sense of exhilaration mixed with fear. Like I am diving off of a cliff and can’t quite see what’s below. Yet each time, my faith in the God who flies with me – who not only beckons me beyond the comfortable but also goes with me into the unknown – has been strengthened tremendously. I see new sides to God that I never would have noticed had I stayed in the comfortable. Certainly becoming parents to twins will be even more faith-building as we must trust God in ways we cannot even anticipate. Here’s to the journey ahead … which will take me far beyond what has been a comfortable (albeit boring and mundane at times) summer.

favorite quotes from “The Horse and His Boy” (C.S. Lewis)

While on a road trip to South Carolina a few weekends ago, I listened to the audio version of “The Horse and His Boy,” one of C.S. Lewis’ books in the beloved Narnian Chronicles. It paints a beautiful picture of redemption – of Shasta’s journey from slavery to freedom, from being owned by another to discovering his royal identity. It truly becomes a metaphor for those who are Christ-followers. Enjoy a few of my favorite “nuggets”:

[Aslan to Shasta toward the end of the book] “There was only one lion … I was the lion … who forced you to join Aravis. I was the cat who comforted you among the houses of the dead. I was the lion who drove the jackals from you while you slept. I was the lion who gave the horses the new strength of fear for the last mile so that you should reach King Lune in time. And I was the lion you do not remember who pushed the boat in which you lay, a child near death, so that it came to shore where a man sat, wakeful at midnight, to receive you.”

[to Shasta when he questions Aslan and asks for an explanation for Aravis’ story] “Child,” said the Voice, “I am telling you your story, not hers. I tell no one any story but his own.”