About the Author

Angie is the proud wife of Todd Smith of Selah, and the blessed mommy to Abby, Ellie, Kate, Charlotte, and Audrey Caroline, who passed away the day she was born, April 7th, 2008. Angie was inspired to write Audrey's story, and began the blog www.audreycaroline.blogspot.com in honor of her. You...

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  1. You’re such a talented writer. I’m reading I Will Carry You and wow! the only other book I have ever read that has made me cry so much is Anne Frank’s Diary. Although I’m not a parent and have not been through what you and many other women have, this book has touched a place in heart, because I have lost very close friends that were more like family than some of my extended family. Some of the people closest to me were telling me within weeks of the death of the first guy I ever truly loved (of course, he didn’t care about me in the same way, but I still felt like he was my best friend) that I needed “to get over it.” It’s been 4 years and I’m still not over it, but knowing what you have said about grief being different for people has eased my heart and made me feel less like some strange girl stuck in the past, who annoys those closest to her when she dwells in the past. I cannot thank you enough for giving me the freedom to grieve when I need to and for as long as I need to.

    • I haven’t read Angie’s book yet. (But I will now!) Isn’t it wonderful how God provides the right word, book, article at the right time. I love how he has done that for both of you!

    • Our baby girl went to be with Jesus the same day she was born. She was still-born and the ONLY REASON she died was because they didn’t watch me carefully enough in the Army Hospital I was in, in Killeen, Texas at Darnell Army Hospital. She was absolutely PERFECT and was born one day before her “due” date! I started having labor pains about midnight on July 19th and they FINALLY let me into the hospital when I was dialated to 8 cm’s! Back then they ONLY let you in the hospital to deliver your baby if you were THAT far along! It wasn’t easy to take the pain but you really didn’t get a choice. They treated me horribly in the hospital and just a few mintues before she was born, I KNEW something HORRIBLE was wrong! I called the nurse and when she came, she just looked at me and yelled at me “You are NOT the ONLY person in this hospital having a baby, so stop your screaming”~!! 🙁 I KNEW something was wrong with the baby even though she was our very first born though and I had to get out of bed and actually CRAWL down to the nurse’s station and by the time I got there-one of the nurses saw me and she came running and I was about to pass out from the pain-my baby was kicking and doing flips!! I KNOW she was turning over & over-she literally was “smothering”~!! I didn’t know it yet but the placenta had pulled away from the wall of the uterus and she WAS truly smothering!! The nurse yelled to that other nurse to get a doctor down there fast-and they FINALLY put me up on a gurney and rolled me into the delivery room. I was in so much pain but more worried about my baby than the pain!! I KNEW something was HORRIBLY WRONG~!! They told me to sit up straight and not to move and I had what was called a “saddle block” where you are numb from the waist down. It was soooo hard to sit up straight with the baby doing what she was doing!! But I THOUGHT everything was going to be just fine-because I JUST KNEW she was fixing to be born and we’d have our baby! We had NO IDEA the sex of the baby-they didn’t have sonograms back then!! And she was born/died on the day the men FIRST walked on the moon!! I could have cared less about that, though, of course, after our baby didn’t live.

      They started delivering the baby though and the doctor kept telling me to PUSH, PUSH and PUSH….and then he said, “Mrs. Morris, you have a fine baby girl!”~!! I was crying tears of joy!! A GIRL~!!!! Just what I wanted!! 🙂 But then….it got VERY QUIET…and I waited to hear her cry and waited & waited and then I saw the doctor start pullint long tubes that were attached to the ceiling (oxygen) and I started asking them WHAT WAS HAPPENING-and WHY WASN’T MY BABY CRYING YET??!!??…..Time passed like the clock has stopped at that time-and I was all but holding my breath and TERRIFIED something was wrong but NOBODY will tell me ANYTHING~!! One nurse came up close to my face and she rubbed my arm and said-it’s going to be okay, don’t worry. I asked what was going on again and got NO ANSWER!! Finally-after what seemed like a LIFETIME, the doctor came up to me and said, “Mrs. Morris, we don’t yet know why, but I’m afraid your baby’s NOT ALIVE…and I’m SO SORRY”~!! I WENT STRAIGHT INTO PANIC MODE and they had to hold me down!! I was CONFUSED and did NOT BELIEVE THEM and WANTED TO SEE MY BABY—but they REFUSED TO LET ME SEE HER~!!!! 🙁 I could not get up b/c they strapped me down and TRIED to calm me down but that was not possible so they gave me a shot of something to try to calm me down and it knocked me out…and the next thing I remember, I was in a room with about 50 other women (a ward of the hospital) who ALL had babies-and I could hear babies crying-and hear mother’s talking to their families, husbands, etc., and babies crying soooo loud-and it hit me like a TON OF BRICKS…..OH YES, OUR BABY IS NOT ALIVE….and it was then that I FINALLY saw my husband and he was crying almost as hard as I was!!

      I won’t go into any more details about it. We named our baby Tara Michelle Morris and she’s buried about 10 miles from where we live at Haven of Memories under a beautiful oak tree and I STILL miss her and STILL wish we had her but I had to go through a very, very difficult time of trying to understand “why” God decided to not let our baby survive that day. Thankfully I was raised up in a very good Christian home or I probably would have lost my mind and NEVER been able to FINALLY come to terms with it with God!! It wasn’t easy, though, for me, even though I was a mature Christian!! But I just wanted to let you know we too understand how horrible and how difficult it is to lose your baby!! There’s nothing else on earth like it-thankfully. She was just perfect and that’s what made it soooo difficult to take. If she’d been born today, I would NOT have been in a hospital where they don’t CARE about you really and treat you like you’re just a “number” of allllllllll the other mother’s having babies and you really got NO GOOD CARE AT ALL….so if you have a still birth like we had, you’re just out of luck!! Your baby will NOT survive because they DID NOT CARE ENOUGH when I JUST KNEW something was “wrong” and totally ignored me and snapped at me and told me to SHUT UP and stop my crying and yelling because of all the horrible pain I was in and I KNEW something WAS DEFINITELY WRONG!!

      The good part is that we had a son the following year in September!! 🙂 My husband finished his tour of duty (he was drafted into the Viet Nam war and served in Viet Nam for 13 months and I lived at home with my parents while he was over seas and prayed daily he’d live to come home because at that time, THOUSANDS of men were dying by the day!! Literally thousands!!)!! So when he finally was out of the Army after we had to stay in Killeen, Texas (I was raised only an hour away in Austin, TX and that’s where I met my husband-at The University Of Texas. He was about to graduate and I’d only started going to college!)….but we struggled with our sadness of losing our beautiful daughter (and YES, I DID get to see our baby!! She was perfectly beautiful-strawberry blonde hair and our son who was born the next year (14 mo apart from our having Tara Michelle), she looked almost exactly like our son only she was smaller. She was 6 lbs, 1oz and our son was 7 lbs, 13oz’s. But they looked almost EXACTLY the same-huge light blue eyes!! I got my dad to get a wheel chair and he took me down to the morgue in that horrible hospital and the woman who’d done the autopsy on our baby had JUST FINISHED the autopsy and she asked me if I wanted to hold her-and of COURSE I DID~!! I held her and loved on her-even though she was already turning blue! She still was sooooo precious…..and I just held her and kissed and kissed her sweet little face, hands and tiny little feet which all were just perfect and the woman who did the autopsy told us that she was ABSOLUTELY PERFECT-nothing at all wrong with her so it WAS BECAUSE of NEGLECT in the labor room for sure!! It was SO HARD to “take” that!! But we had to. Only God got us through it, though. We NEVER could have gotten through that if not for His love and the strength he gave us but it still was very, very difficult, of course.

      All these years later, the older I get, the more I think about the beautiful daughter we lost, too. Once your chiildren are grown and you have grandchildren and you retire, you find yourself thinking about that PRECIOUS child you lost but you DO realize it won’t be THAT LONG until you will go to heaven and be with Jesus too and you WILL see your sweet, beautiful baby girl again!! 🙂

      Sincerely,
      And Admirer of your wonderful Gospel Music!!

  2. What a beautiful post…..12 years ago I was at a time in my life when I had so much pain…so much fear….and the story of the sparrow kept lingering in my mind….I cried out to God…asking Him to show me…anything….a neighbor came over stating he noticed my gutter was clogged…he climbed a ladder and found a sparrow was the reason for the clogged downspout….the Lord had heard my cry and showed me that he truly cared for me…He knew me…… that sparrow was my very real, very tangible response from my Father that I should not be afraid because I am worth more to Him than many sparrows.

  3. “Despicable as the shadows may be, they hold the promise of the Master’s voice. Worry not about tomorrow, wondering if the sun will come again.” So, so beautiful. Thank you for this post.

  4. Such beautiful truth. So good to be reminded to remove the “chatter” and just listen to the Master, especially coming off of a blogging conference that was full of that talk, talk, talk. Thank you.

    P.S. Sorry I didn’t get to meet you at Friday night’s dinner. I was on the other side of the room. 🙂

  5. Well written. I sense your heart and soul invested in your words. I loved your word ‘silhouettes’ … such a great word choice!

    Keep Writing!

  6. I don’t normally write comments when I read the (in)courage blogs that come my way, although many touch my heart or clearly resonate with me. But your words and thoughts were just so beautiful. I love that God found a way to reach you and touch your heart. Thanks for sharing something from your life that I’m sure many others can identify with.

  7. this is powerful. i too had an experience with God about the sparrow passage… in one of the hardest times in my life He sent a sparrow to tap on my office window. it took me a while to realize this was more than coincidence and that the sparrow would tap when i was struggling with trusting Him to take care of me. He was reminding me, I care for you! God is so amazing at how He consistently shows us His love and care when we are most questioning our worth. i love your post. thank you for sharing. sing sparrow sing.

  8. Thank you for sharing this. It is also an image God has used to draw me closer to him in the last 4 years.
    I really needed to read this this morning. Praise God!
    Bless you.

  9. Thank you for always sharing your heart. I’m glad to know I’m not so alone in my thoughts. You have a beautiful way of penning them. I appreciate your obedience.
    Blessings

  10. Beautiful. I’ll be sharing this with my friend who is still searching and wondering if He knows she exists. Thanks, Angie, for sharing. Be blessed ~

  11. Words can’t describe how deeply this touched me. So poetic, but not in a fairy tale way. A beautiful picture of the depth and vastness of Gods love for us.
    Just beautiful

  12. Angie, this made me do the happy-heart sigh. Thank you for this reminder that I’m loved and that God wants me to share my song with the world, even in the dark times. I needed this today. Appreciate you, friend, and so grateful for you…

  13. Our Heavenly Father ALWAYS knows what we need and I needed this today. Thank you so much for being willing to be used by Him. He spoke to me through you.

  14. I’ve been really into birds this past year. Silhouettes of birds, the modern looking artsy birds… maybe this is why. Thank you for sharing your beautiful heart.

  15. Angie, thank you for listening to God’s whispers. The words of this post reflect HIM, so. Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for Angie.

  16. Exactly what I needed to read this morning. I’m sitting in the dark currently and this is just beautiful. Thank you.

  17. I can’t help but wonder if this is an excerpt from your new book! (How many more days until we can purchase it?)

    Thank you for being obedient to the One who whispers the words to your heart, and for sharing those words with us. God writes to us all through you, Angie, it makes us pause, lean in, and listen. Thank you.

  18. Thank you.
    You have such a tender, beautiful, poignant way with words.
    Thank you for showing me how to surrender.
    How to fall into His hands.
    Despite feeling so distant and far away from Him,
    wondering too if He knows I exist.
    Thank you for this gentle reminder
    to fall into His grace,
    even when the pain hurts so profoundly
    to know that He will hold me
    in the palm of His hands
    and catch my fall.

    Thank you.

  19. Oh, this brought tears to my eyes. It was so what I needed to hear today, when my faith is feeling rather small. Thank you.

  20. WOW! so good! I used to feel that way… that God loved everyone ELSE like that but not me, and then one day… eyes opened! I not only see His love, and I FEEL it, and am overwhelmed by it!

  21. Angie, Your beautifully poetic words touch me in such a deep personal place…affirming the call to surrender I feel. In fact I wrote about it just a couple days ago.

    I am finding His voice so much easier to hear in those dark places…not that I wish for them to be more plentiful but just that I can be certain in those valleys…He was there with me the whole time.

    Love your heart my dear!
    Jen

  22. so touching&beautiful. thank you for sharing.

    your blog is one that has brought me much comfort since our loss. i read about the strength that the Lord has given you…and it gives me hope

    thank you for always sharing your heart

  23. I laughed about the guy who couldn’t recall your last name until I remembered Smith is your married name 🙂

    Thanks for once again speaking His truth, always a pleasure to read your writing.

  24. I needed to hear that at this exact moment in my life. I’m like the bird in the darkness and I need to stop worrying and listen for His voice. Thank you Angie. You are such an inspiration.

  25. It’s always amazing to me the ways God chooses to send his message…as in a book about birds! I wonder too about how many messages I miss because I’m not listening!

  26. The Lord always knows what He’s doing when He says something in Scripture. He definitely had a purpose in choosing the sparrow of all the birds He could have chosen.
    Short verse today, but a powerful one! Praying right now!
    1 Peter 5:7 Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.
    Prayer Bears
    My email address

  27. iF WE could ever get that God loves us we would be doing good. God already knows all of our imperfections and yet he still loves us. This is a thought if we loved ourselves as God loves us then we could in turn love others as he loves us.

  28. “In the black night, I listened to His voice and I heard Him in a way I never had before. I stopped trying to focus on the silhouettes around me, panicked and desperate for my bearings. I accepted the fact that it might be a long while before I knew where I was and how to find my way back. Slowly, I started to believe that He treasured me enough to trust my voice in the dark. Nobody watching, nobody to judge.”

    Thank you so much for this post. It is a beautiful analogy. I needed to hear that I can quit searching and struggling so hard to get out of the darkness and just sit waiting for the Master to teach me to SING! I have spent way too much time being quiet because I was afraid of others judgement. I’m gonna sing in this darkness!

  29. Thank you so much for sharing…this piece moved my spirit this morning. I am one who worries greatly…and that is a gross understatement! Your writing today helped to remind me that its ok to let go…to rest my weary mind… to rest aching my heart … even if its just a smidge. It helped to remind me (and thankfully so) that there is a greater knowlege and understanding that only rests in Him! Have a blessed day.

  30. Thank you. This is so inspired. Thank God He does speak to us in the darkness. Thankfully we’re never alone, abandoned or cut off.
    Thanks!

  31. You have such a way of really reaching me with your words. I pray that I could be as graceful, humble and genuine as you are; but I also know that it is His love that radiates from you. I’ve known him for years; in some more than others. And I continue to strive to always have years that He walks beside me on bad days -and- good. Thank you for sharing His love and His message in a way that no one else has ever done in my walk. You are an amazing person and even though we’ve never met, I feel sure that God led me to your words and He reminds me of that every time I read them. Thanks again for always sharing His love in such a non-judgemental, compassionate and genuinely caring way -I know many a person who has been turned off to Christians that had the message right, but the approach was all wrong. You are truly a gift:)

  32. Thank you. Know that God used you to speak to my heart today. Your words were exactly what I needed to hear.

  33. I left a comment on your blog after reading your precious story. I am sitting here in my kitchen with big tears running down my face as my 3 little boys and sweet husband keep walking by and peeking at me to see if I’m OK- I am – and I am in the process of being convicted to dig deeper. He wants more from me.
    We adopted our boy #3- I recently posted parts of our adoption story on my blog. What i’ve not been telling people is that for the past year we have been walking on BLIND FAITH each and every day.
    I know God has the answers & I know how to lay it at His feet. So why am I blogging about the silly craft project we just did instead of sharing the truth? I’ve been a wimp! Pray for me- pray for our boy spencer – pray for the rest of the family to be ok- and please pray that I will follow where He leads!
    (funny- I’ve been talking about the sparrow lately & saying that if He cares for them He can surely take care of us) – sorry for the long winded post! I will be praying for your family
    Your Sister In Christ- from Florida, Kelli B

  34. I’m a new reader, I got to your website * bring the rain*through revive our hearts. Your life and wak with God has been deeply encouraging and I was looking for a way to subscribe to your blog, butI dont really know if there is a way or if I even can?
    I know you dont have time to answer this but maybe one of your followers can answer.. be blessed

    heidi

  35. Thank you for such a great reminder.
    Sing.
    Yes, sing (in our own way!! Wink!!) thank you for sharing your heart and communicating it so clearly. blessings!

  36. This is my story. The one that I thought I had lived and left behind. But it seems that I didn’t quite learn the lesson the first time around and insisted that I was ready for that cover to come off my cage. Sometimes God is gracious and gives us what we want – even when it is not what is best for us. I have recently found myself in the darkness again, struggling to determine the sense of it all. This is a blessed reminder that brought me to tears.

    God loves me.
    He loves the music that He has placed in my heart.
    And He knows that the world is waiting to hear it.
    But He hasn’t yet finished teaching me how it goes.

    May I learn to rest in Him. May I learn to echo His song through this time in the dark. May I learn to be patient, for He truly makes all things beautiful in His time.

  37. I am literally just waking up from a horrible nightmare. I just recently (in the past 6 months) had memories return from childhood that are not good ones to say the least. I am/have been struggling in this especially for the past 3 or 4 months. Nightmares plauge me more than ever in my life, I dream more bad things than anything good. I am struggling in this time of darkness b/c I can’t know how long this will last. and I try to depend on my savior but even that gets hard somedays. it is lonely lonely lonely here is this pit of darkness. but thank u again Angie for words of encouragement. while I have never been married or have any children, I read your book b/c it relates in so many ways to any loss, any struggle. I have to believe that the light is coming and try so hard to sing through and in this darkness believing that my Master hears my desperate yet beautiful song.

  38. Thank you so much for this post. I needed this so very much today as our lives have plunged into some tough times this week (and they weren’t that easy before so I am finding it extremely hard to cope with the constant stress). I have to admit that I still have much work to do to get to the place of total and complete faith but thank you for giving me the hope that I can get there.

  39. Angie, thank you for your beautiful words and reminding us how much we matter to God. In a world of rush-rush, doing laundry, cooking dinner, bathing, playing and schooling kids – all this constant activity – it’s so easy to lose sight of yourself as God’s chosen loved one. It’s important to be reminded of how much we matter to God.

    Thank you for being obedient to God’s calling to your life to share beautiful encouraging words to those around the world. You are such a blessing.

  40. I needed to be reminded of this. God’s been wanting me to grow in the shade for a while now. I am embracing it as best I can with His help! This reminded me of another shade story: about a shade garden and how only certain beautiful flowers can grow in the shade. They need it to bring out the best in them. I can’t remember the scripture to go with the story but it was perfectly to the point. Just as yours is in my life. Not to mention another shade devot. I read yesterday. He is encouraging me along the way. 🙂 Thank you!

  41. Wow! I have chills all over my body!

    You are an amazing writer and I’ve been reading along with you for a long time.

    I just lost my sweet baby girl, Maddie Grace on January 8th. She was 2 days old. I have been lost in grief and heartache ever since and have been clinging to the Word of God and asking him for strength through this hard time.

    There are so many things that you said here that have helped me today. Mostly about when it is the night. That is when I struggle the most. But more than that the fact that you talked about the sparrow. I can’t tell you the connections I have had with birds through my sweet daughters life. I’m in awe… God has used you here today Angie! He has used you in my life many times since January the 8th. I’ve read your book, it’s amazing. Thank you for letting God use you!

  42. Angie, I just today found your blog through my friends blog, Emily Carter of “The Pilots Wife. I can’t begin to tell you how powerful and how it reached my heart. I’m 71 years old and looking back, I can say that the times the Lord has been more real to me and has made me stronger, is in the dark times my husband and I have been through in the 50 years (this July) that we’ve been married. Before I met my husband, I was engaged and my fiancee’ was killed. I thought my world had ended, but little could I have known who God had prepared for me in my future. After marriage, we lost our first two babies a year apart at 18 weeks pregnancy with each one. Coming from the oldest of six kids, I was completely devasted. I’d always dreamed of having a large family. A year later God blessed us with our oldest son and because of extreme inherited hypertension, we were told we’d never have more children. But as you and I know, God has always overruled what man may say and 9 years later our other son was born. We now have six beautiful grandchildren – five girls and one boy and two great-grandchildren! Being in ministry, we’ve been through many valleys, including the loss of both sets of parents, as well as many friends. The story of the sparrow was especially meaningful because so many people want to know how I can always be so happy and joyful. And I get to tell them that it’s because of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. He makes me happy inside even when everything outside is falling apart. I wanted to thank you for sharing this because it touched me like nothing else has in a long time. May God bless you and your husband and your precious children as you continue to serve Him who is very much alive on planet earth! I still don’t have answers to all the things that have happened, but I know that my Redeemer lives and He has not been surprised by anything that takes place in my life.

  43. From 2002 until 2008, I tried unsuccessfully to have a second baby. We had our first son with no trouble, but our second attempt was long and hard. In the midst of those 6 years I had two miscarriages within 1 1/2 years of each other. I live in the “country” and have a big window above my bathtub…..a “real” window that I can see out of. I have always loved to look at the birds in my back yard while I took a bath. But while I was going throught the trial of the infertility and the 2 losses, I would look at those birds, and I would repeat that hymn over and over again. “His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He WATCHES ME! I knew that none of my tears were forgotten, and I knew He was still God despite my circumstances and the LONG oftentimes UNBEARABLE waiting. God blessed us with our second son on March 23, 2009. I still find it hard to believe at times. There isn’t a day that goes by that I am not thankful for God’s unwavering faithfulness! And I still love to look at my sweet birds in the backyard:)

  44. Beautiful post. Sing love. There in the darkness, uncluttered with clatter, the song is taught us. I will think of this when I read the verse in the Bible the next time and perhaps always. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. Blessings to you, Angie…

  45. This was timely that I came across this article. Today I felt alone. Today my heart ached as we contiue to walk the SI journey and it’s been over a year since our miscarriage. Yet after reading this I was reminded of a song I was given alomst a year ago by Chris Tomling called, “Sing Sing Sing.” Thank you for the reminder to sing to Him even in the darkness, especially in the darkness.