Perhaps the scariest moment in 11 years of parenting

It was one week ago today.  Our car was in the shop (again), so Sara had to walk to pick Grace and Walker up from a half-day at school.  At 11:30am, I received a panicked call from Sara.  She had arrived at the school, found Grace, but hadn’t found my 6-year old son Walker.  A short and frantic search later, he was nowhere to be found.

Within moments, we found out that someone had seen him walking away from the school with a random kid that we didn’t know.  But that was it.  Nobody knew where he was.

Being 30 minutes away from your son who has gone missing makes you do two things.  Pray, and drive really fast.  Prayer at _ _ miles an hour is interesting prayer.

I don’t even want to remember the things that were running through my head.  I couldn’t even fathom the possibility that he had walked home.  First, a mile is a long way for a 6-year old to walk.  Plus, how would he even find his way there by himself?

What I did imagine was my sometimes absent-minded son walking home with a friend until that friend reached his home, and then Walker having no idea what to do or how to contact us.  Other scenarios flooded my mind as well – kidnapped; hit by a car; killed?

I called a friend to ask him to pray, and after he finished praying, my phone beeped to let me know another call was coming in.  It was Sara, who had been speed-walking to our house along with Grace and Walker’s teacher.  Grace had been sent to run ahead, and she had returned with the report that Walker was at our front door.

Now, you need to know a few things to fully appreciate how amazing it is that God protected my little boy.  The school is located on a heavily trafficked road (with 3 lanes on each side).  We found out later that Walker had crossed that road by himself.  No crossing guards.  As he had been trained, he looked left, looked right, and he had seen no cars coming.  Apparently one car had stopped and motioned for him to keep going (picture a road where cars are usually travelling 50 miles an hour with a car stopped motioning a tiny boy to cross the road!!!).  Secondly, I don’t know how Walker knew how to find our house.  He had only been attending the school a few weeks, and most kids don’t even know how to navigate to places they have been travelling for years.

I do give God the credit for protecting my son, just like He did when Walker was bitten by a poisonous Copperhead snake last year.   I don’t know all the reasons why God has protected him in two potentially life-threatening situations, but I know at least one.

Today I was teaching Walker a piano lesson, and he asked me if he could play a song he had made up.  He started playing, and my mouth dropped open.  When he finished, I asked him if I could play with him, and if you click on the link below you may be astonished as much as I was.  I am playing the left hand accompaniment (the low notes) and Walker is improvising the melody (the high notes).  No sheet music involved here – all the notes and rhythms came from his head.  He said it was a God-song.

Walker Improvising a Melody

God protected my son because he has a purpose for his little life, which definitely includes music.  And God has a purpose for everyone who has have been given breath long enough to read this post.

Thank God for giving you another day to live out His purpose for you.  If you’re not sure what that purpose is, see if you can trace God’s hand in your life.  Notice how God is already working through you, and see what needs to be reoriented in your life so that you can devote more of your life to His purpose.

One last thought.  Perhaps you can trace God’s hand in someone else’s life today like I did with Walker.  Many people are blind to the ways God is using them to bless others.  If you see an evidence of God working through someone today, point it out.  Helping people find their purpose in life is one of the most dynamic ways you can make an impact on this world.  You are not only helping the person you are encouraging, but you’re indirectly helping everyone that person touches as they live out their purpose in this world.

PLEASE TAKE A MOMENT TO VISIT OUR UPDATED PRAYER PAGE SO YOU CAN PRAY SPECIFICALLY FOR US AS YOU REMEMBER US.  THANKS!

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Categories: Experiences | 7 Comments

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7 thoughts on “Perhaps the scariest moment in 11 years of parenting

  1. Charlene

    Wow, I am so glad that our God was in control of this situation and that Walker is home safe! Praise the Lord! Now Walker needs to “title” his composition, maybe “I found my way home” !
    Praying for you.

  2. Oh, my. So thankful for the happy ending. Indeed, God is watching over Walker. Cool little tune. Sounds hymnic. Is that a word? Anyway, I look forward to what it becomes.

  3. Lyn Voige

    Rabid fox, Copperhead, and now this story with a happy ending. Praise God! How is that gray hair doing with another “character building experience”. Walker’s song reflects his love of Jesus and happy nature. He may have had that going in his head as he walked home. I can’t wait to hear about any words he might add.
    God is touching lives through all the Allen family. We love you and miss you.

  4. Angela

    Oh wow, maybe you should have named him something else…he obviously has taken his name a little too seriously!

    I cannot imagine how long that time period felt for you and Sara but I am so thankful that all the “what ifs” were in God’s hands. He definitely has a plan and purpose for your son! He is an Allen, after all…which translates into BIG plans!

  5. Kelly

    I am so thankful that Walker was holding his Abba Daddy’s hand as he made the journey home. I loved the music Shawn. What a gift God has given him. I’ll be praying for you all. I love the updates too!

  6. Marilyn Jensen

    Just read your blog. My heart is still pounding, though I knew the outcome would be positive. Praise God for sheltering Walker in His arms and for the gift of music that has been given him.

  7. Clearly this is way past this scary event….love how brave and confident that little Walker is!! The song he created is beautiful; it brought tears to my eyes…..we miss you guys very much. xoxo

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