Take Courage

Take Courage

I stumbled back into bed around 4:45 am, after a back-breaking, mind-numbing two hours spent feeding and comforting Baby Brother.  Less than thirty minutes later, I felt Mr. Native Texan shaking me awake.  “He’s crying.  Is it time to feed him again?”

That night I got about three hours of sleep–and those three hours were not consecutive.  We were in the thick of sleep training with a three week old, ala the Baby Whisperer

That incredibly sleepless night came on the heels of another sleepless night that was sandwiched between several stressful days of lots of crying (mostly the baby, but myself included) and lots and lots of shushing and patting.  Read the book; you’ll understand.

Overall, he was sleeping better, but later that week we would determine that reflux was interfering with his ability to fall asleep and stay asleep.  We’re currently experimenting with a variety of natural remedies for reflux.  Stay tuned–hopefully I’ll have positive results to report soon!

I was so exhausted that, like my newborn, my limbs felt not entirely within my control.  My hands and arms felt shaky and tended to knock things over.

I can’t keep doing this, I thought.  I am losing my mind.

The next day, during a super-brief moment to myself (Thanks, Gigi!), I grabbed my Bible and read the next section in the book of Matthew where I’ve been slowly working my way through (emphasis on slowly).

And there in the 14th chapter of Matthew, I read the account of Jesus walking on the water.  You know the story: the disciples were in a boat, sailing across the lake ahead of Jesus who had stayed behind to pray.

In the middle of the night, in the middle of the lake, a fierce storm came up and the disciples were terrified.  Their boat was going down.  Suddenly they saw someone walking toward them on the water.  It was Jesus.

He said to them, Take courage; it is I.  Do not be afraid.

My translation reveals this scenario occurred during the fourth watch of the night.  Want to guess when that is? The fourth watch of the night is between the hours of 3:00 and 6:00 am.

3:00 and 6:00 am: precisely the time of my grueling endeavors upstairs in the nursery.  During my storm, when I was terrified I wouldn’t make it through the night, or the week, or the first year of my child’s life with my sanity intact.  My boat was sinking, I was going down.

Take courage, He says.  It is I.  Do not be afraid.

Thank you, Lord, for this timely reminder.  Thank you for walking out to my sinking ship in the midst of the storm and whispering words of comfort to my weary, troubled soul.

And like Peter in the next part of the story, I climbed out of the boat and headed for Jesus.  Because even if I fall, like Peter did, I know Jesus will catch me in His almighty arms.  I will not be afraid.

What’s your storm?  Be encouraged today by the words of Jesus…

Take courage.  It is I.  Do not be afraid.


Take Courage
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Kathleen Henderson

Let's get real! I’m Kathleen Henderson, your Natural Living Mentor. I’m on a mission to help families see the joy in real food, while finding natural remedies and creating a nontoxic home. Learn more about my story >>


  1. Janice on 06/26/2014 at 11:43 am

    Hang in there! Believe me – I know exactly how you feel! My 6 year old has never been a good sleeper and we tried it all (with the exception of diffusing oils, which has put a diffuser high on my NEED list lol!) I just keep reminding myself that far too soon she won’t even want us to tuck her in, let alone climb in our bed and snuggle (read: kick around and flop everywhere) in the middle of the night. 😉
    And when it gets really bad, then I have to remind myself that some parents aren’t so fortunate. Some have children sleeping in a hospital bed every night or no longer with them at all. Then I thank God that she is keeping us up and I try my best to embrace it and charge thru.
    I know its not the same with a newborn who is nursing, but sleep deprivation is sleep deprivation. And it is no fun lol. Just make sure you try to nap during the day! I made my lotion with citrus bliss and bergamot at the class and it gives me a little pep and smells amazing!
    Hope it gets better soon!!

    • Kathleen on 06/26/2014 at 11:30 pm

      Thank you, Janice! I agree–perspective is key. 🙂 And would your 6yo let you apply the oils to her feet, while you wait for a diffuser?

  2. Ruth Ann on 06/27/2014 at 1:23 am

    Even the midst of total exhaustion and sleep deprivation you once again manage to teach all of us a great lesson of how God is at work in our lives even when we don’t feel it. ….great verse! God is never on vacation….He is ALWAYS at work! It is just like God to speak to you at just the right time to encourage you!
    I love the pictures of your precious son and the one of you holding him…..that is priceless! Your love for him radiates from you!
    Hopefully the reflux is under control and your both getting much needed sleep.
    Thanks for the encouragement in the midst of your trail!

    • Kathleen on 06/27/2014 at 9:23 pm

      Thanks for your encouragement, Ruth Ann! 🙂

  3. Corie Orr on 06/27/2014 at 8:05 pm

    Thank you for writing this. I completely relate to this since it wasn’t long ago I went through the same scenario. Dd is three months now and it is so much better.

    • Kathleen on 06/27/2014 at 9:24 pm

      Thanks for reading, Corie. I know from experience it will get better, but it’s hard to remember that in the moment. Thanks for the reminder! 🙂

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