#3: My Mother

May 9, 2010

Name: Tina Knox

hmmm....wife, mother, teacher, discipler and the one that is my official "occupation" if you're talking about business. I own along with my husband, Ted,  5 properties in NY. Though we own them together, they are primarily my responsibility to manage.

If we were to ask those around you, what role would they say you most often play in the lives of others?
I think I most often play the role of encourager/exhorter.

What is your unique place in your family?
My unique place in my family...I am the hub of the wheel. I'm the one who often sets the tone of our home, for good or bad. I'm the harbor that all my ships leave from and come home to. 

Hardest trial you faced, and ways it has made you stronger:
We recently spent five years living in New York, and my time there presented some really difficult trials that exposed much in my heart and brought about some real growth, as James 1 promises. However, I still think the hardest trial I've endured was in the early years of my marriage. I began it marriage with lots of expectations, and they all revolved around me being the center of everything. No one could've told me that at the time, but that was indeed the case. When I married my husband, Ted, he was really struggling with big things. His mom had died and it had rocked his world. He was a fairly new Christian, and I was a really immature Christian. Because I was so absorbed in me, I wasn't there for him in the ways he needed, and he slid into a depression that caused him to become closed towards God and closed towards me. It was a lonely, lonely time that lasted for several years. I remember thinking it is easier to be alone than with someone and feel alone. It just punctuates the aloneness. But, God was at work in all of it, and Romans 8:28-30 is true. God used that lonliness to show me that my husband couldn't be my Messiah. The Lord met me in tender ways, showing me Himself. I learned to read my Bible to find help and hope. I learned to cry out in prayer to my God, knowing He saw and heard. I learned to take literally what it said on the pages of Scripture and to believe that that was the God I was praying to. It was the beginning of learning what it meant to walk in the light.

Your definition of beauty: 
Beauty...it comes in so many shapes and sizes and colors, but for me it has certain elements in common. It's natural; it's strong; it's vulnerable; it's real. It isn't one thing...it's the clear, clear eyes of a young child. My nephew Sam, who has incredibly bright, blue eyes was sitting at the table yesterday next to my Haitian daughter Beta, who has deep brown, dreamy eyes and I thought about how clear and fresh and beautiful their young eyes are. Hands are one of the most beautiful things to me. They show so much about a person. I love my Dad's big, freckled, craggy, strong hands. I love my son Cameron's hands as they hold a paint brush. I love veiny, strong, brown hands with silver jewelry on them...weird, I know. My favorite hands in the world are my husband's. I've watched them hold our children, turn pages of countless books, write with his distinctive way he holds a pen, type, and tenderly, intimately touch me.

Accomplishment you're most pleased with:
The accomplishment I'm most pleased with perhaps shouldn't be called an accomplishment at all. It is the investment I have found most worthwile and received the most returns from and that is praying faithfully for my husband over the years and having the privelage of watching God use my prayers to grow my him and teach us how to love each other. We went from being two selfish, independent people to two people in a one-flesh relationship who, as Jonathan Edwards said of his relationship with his wife Sarah, have "uncommon union."

Next feat you're tackling: Raising kid #5, Bethany.

Dream job: The one I'm doing

Favorite food: My favorite food is moist chocolate cake and food that is made by someone other than me.

Three things that make you terribly happy:
Three things that make me terribly happy are time with people I love (this one is so far above the other two and incapsulates so much that the other two seem small next to it), moments when I am alert and savoring the moment...whether it's taking in the sunset or a meal when all my children are present, and gardening...taking a spot and making it into something lovely with a little time and effort, then watching it change and mature.

Best advice you've ever received: To never underestimate your importance in someone's life.

Favorite quote:
I have a quote book that I too infrequently put quotes in, but my favorite quote in it is a dedication poem T.S. Elliot wrote to his wife. It reminds me of Prov. 5:15-19. It captures perfectly the one-flesh relationship that God wants a husband and wife to share and though Elliot wrote it for his wife, I always think of my husband when I read it:

A Dedication to My Wife To Whom I owe the leaping delight
That quickens my senses in our waking time
And the rhythm that governs the repose of our sleeping time,
the breathing in unison
of lovers whose bodies smell of each other
who think the same thoughts without need of speech
And babble the same speech without need of meaning.
No peevish winter wind shall chill
No sullen tropic sun shall wither
the roses in the rose garden which is ours and ours only
But this dedication is for others to read.
These are private words to you addressed in public.

Favorite picture of yourself:

Book you're currently reading: 
Books I'm currently reading: The Connected Child by Karyn B. Purvis, et al, The Heart of Anger by Lou Priolo, Trusting God by Jerry Bridges (for the third time), and I just finished Till We Have Faces by C.S. Lewis and am in need of a new, good novel, Lastly, I am reading the one book I'm always reading but never through with and that is the Bible. I'm currently trying to read through it following a program that has you in a different part of the Bible each day. It says it's a program for "shirkers and slackers," of which I admit to being.


Kelly@TearingUpHouses said...

Awww, how lucky you are to have such an insightful mother, Shanley!


Aaron Klein said...

Love this. Your mother is an inspiration. Great timing on this post, too! :)

Valerie said...

Shanley, your mom is a truly beautiful and amazing woman. (so are you)
Valerie Benavidez

angela said...

incredible. so beautiful. i just love love love her and want to be so much like her.

and tina, i love hands too. i agree that they tell you so much about a person. it's one of my favorite features on people.