Today we shall honor sweet Shannon Hanna. Shannon, wife of Quay Hanna, is the mother of three children: QJ (age 7), Oliver (age 3), and Lexie (age 1). Shannon supports Quay in his church responsibilities in a number of ways including helping to lead one of the Sola care groups. My experience of Shannon has been that she is a woman who shares easily, and with a heart that yearns to learn.
With having a lot of responsibilities over this past year, I asked Shannon how she saw God help her.
“Interestingly, this past year has been quite hard for me. Looking back, though, I now see that God has brought many sins to the light and for that I am greatly thankful. In the past year: we had our third child (Lexie); QJ started school at Hambright Elementary (Penn Manor) which brought on all kinds of committees and school activities; had a teenager live with us for several months; were forced to handle several difficult situations in our extended families; and saw the number of ladies in our CG grow to a point that it was hard to keep up. All that was in addition to being a wife and mom. All these things tempted me to become anxious; have a fear of man; and ultimately to lack faith in God’s sovereignty . By God’s kindness in stretching me he showed me how I was depending on my own strength. I thought I could take it all on myself and not use the resources he has blessed me with. I also saw how being involved in more things opened up my life for others to critique. This was hard to embrace, at times.
I do want to say, though, with my year of craziness, the girls in our care group have been so gracious and patient as I have been distant from them. I thank you ladies for that and even always encouraging me and caring for me. I love you all!”
I then asked Shannon what area she thinks God is working on in her.
“I need to know that I am not super mom. I need to be humble and ask for help and/or receive help when asked. I need to continue allowing people to observe me and my work and let them see my sinfulness, but also to know that I don’t answer to them. I answer to God. I need not to fear man, but God. God also has blessed me with a husband that leads me to know when too much is too much. He sees when I am getting too involved and need to cut back. I also want to focus more on my relationship with my children. I often put the everyday duties before them. I need to look past the dirty floors and piles of laundry to be with them and help them grow mentally, physically, and spiritually.”
Finally, I asked Shannon what brings her joy.
“The role that God has called me to as a wife and mother. Since I was very little, when people asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up, I would always respond, “I want to be a wife and a mom.” Now, I am living it! What a gift!
I have been a wife for 9 years and a mother for almost 7 years. Being Quay’s wife for 9 years has only increased my love, respect, and trust for him all the more. I still get giddy when I see him pull in the driveway after his work day. Sometimes I just want to push my kids aside so I can get the first hug and kiss. The leadership, discernment, kindness, grace and love that I receive from him everyday has brought me closer to God. Quay is always helping me to see my own sin and he’s always pointing me back to the cross.
Being a mom is something I treasure. These 3 little guys are the children I share with a man that I love. Sometimes I just sit and watch my kids as they play, watch tv, eat, whatever, and I just smile in awe of God. These are little blessings that I have the privilege to watch grow up and be a part of that process. Yes, this stage of their lives is trying and tiring, but I want to enjoy each moment. I am also so thankful to God for the love they have for each other. Whenever one of them is away from the other for an extended time (even nap or night’s sleep) they are so excited to see each other. They greet one another with huge smiles and hugs.”
Here are the words from her husband, Quay:
When God brought us together almost 14 years ago, it became very clear that He was partnering me with someone who could point me to this simple truth about God: He is sovereign, so just trust Him. Shannon lives amid the storms of life with an unwavering trust that he will provide her with the ability to do all that he has called her to do and be. This makes a huge impression on me as I watch her develop in the roles of wife, mother, and caregroup leader. Instead of wondering how she will do what He has called her to next, she chooses to rest in the knowledge that he is already preparing her for that time. In the peace that this brings, she uses her energy for hospitality and to serve others; especially our family. She frequently sets aside her chores to let our children know they are loved by spending specific time with them each and every day: playing Legos with QJ; reading a book to Oliver; painting Lexie’s toenails for church. She uses these interactions as times to also share with them the truth about the Gospel. She does the same for me: packing my lunch for work; making sure I have time to relax at her own expense; nodding and smiling as I ramble away about something I heard in a podcast or read in a book. I am especially amazed at how she releases me for the myriad of duties I have related to the local church. She is sacrificing, earnest, and a blessing to everyone around her. It allows me to remark in the same way as the husband in Proverbs 31, “Many women have done excellently, but you surpass them all.” Thanks, Shanny. We all love you.
Shannon has a sister in the church named Carrie Keener. I asked her to write a little something about Shannon as well:
Shannon is a loving, caring, and godly woman. One of the many qualities I love about Shannon is her gift of hospitality. She opens up her home and her family in order to serve so many people. Several years ago Shannon and Quay invited me to come live with them while I was in school. She not only provided me with a room but she made sure that I had a good meal before I went to school. She included me as part of “their” family. Shannon is not only my sister but my best friend. There are so many times that I will either just stop by and call just to chat and we end up going into deeper conversations. Shannon is quick to point me to the gospel and challenge my heart in times that I need to be shown to Christ. She is also quick to encourage me in times that I am feeling very discouraged. There are so many things I love about my sister that it would take forever to write them all down. Thinking about how much I love and cherish our relationship brings tears to my eyes. Shannon thank you for everything you do for me, your family, and our family! I love you!