Thursday, September 14, 2017

For Such A Time As This

And in this moment, I was made for this........

Goodness gracious life has been crazy yall! The past few weeks we have experienced fevers, walking pneumonia, I somehow got Shingles and to end the it all, a random stomach bug. Did I also add while all this was going on, people from HOLLYWOOD flew to little ol' Bessemer, Alabama and filmed a movie at my husband's workplace? JOHN TRAVOLTA himself was there for TWO days while I was covered up in shingles and cleaning snot off kids noses. And the stomach bug hit one of my little ones RIGHT after my husband landed in Detroit for a week long work trip. I have to admit, jealousy has been EATING ME UP this week. My husband got to hang out with movie stars all last week and now he's resting in a quiet, cool, clean, 5 star hotel in Detroit. One afternoon when he got done with his meetings he said he was bored and didn't have anything to do …….. bored…….. while I was cleaning up after a stomach bug and spraying lysol on the kids 24/7. Bored - I don't remember the last time I was bored? But sometimes being bored sounds REALLY REALLY FUN! LOL

My Husband with
Mr Grease Lightning Himself
In all seriousness I LOVE my husband dearly. I am so thankful to have such a hardworking husband that will go above and beyond to make sure we are always taken care of. He deserves a break. He works crazy hours at work and on the nights where he gets home early, he completely takes over the kids and gives me a break. He is AMAZING and I am so blessed to have him. We celebrate 7 years of marriage on Saturday. I am a very lucky girl even if I didn't get to hang out with John Travolta! lol 

But sometimes I don't feel lucky. I can get so jealous of the things he gets to do. Not only him, but of many others. I can feel so inadequate and end up having a pity party of 1 while watching an episode of Golden Girls and eating candy corn and peanuts. So depressing, I know lol.

Why does this person get to do that while I'm here doing this? Why is that going on there while this is going on here? How is any of this fair? I get downright bitter y’all. 

Sometimes I have to remind myself I am an almost 30 year old woman with a COLLEGE DEGREE who graduated with HONORS when my 2 year old makes me feel like I am 2 feet tall. lol. 

I had big big dreams when I was a kid. If you ask anyone what I always said I wanted to be when I grew up they would tell you I desperately wanted to be Diane Sawyer. I wanted to be on Good Morning America SO bad. I wanted to be on television. I wanted to help others. I desperately wanted to make a difference as a news anchor.  

When I was in college, things changed. I met with one of the teachers in the Department of Communications and they silently laughed (I could tell in their faces!) at me while I described my dreams. They told me if I ever wanted a job in broadcasting I would HAVE to get rid of my accent and it would involve me moving out of the south. Yep, those 2 things were a BIG deal breaker to me. Removing the word “Y’all” from my vocabulary and living too far from a Milo’s didn't sound like my cup of tea. Thats when I first started realizing things sometimes don't go as planned. 

I graduated from college, got a job in a marketing, and after a few years I was married and expecting our first child and became a stay at home mom. 


Theres another thing that didn't go like I thought. 

Lets talk about this whole stay at home mom gig. 

Yes I live in workout clothes. Guess what - the only workout my workout clothes have ever seen is when I'm chasing my kids when they escape from the stroller or when I'm running up and down stairs putting up laundry. 

I found out real fast that being a stay at home mom didn't involve sleeping late and living a life filled with perfect pinterest crafts. Yep, it meant remiding yourself to eventually sneak in a shower every once in a while, trading in your nice clean car for one that is filled to the brim with carseats, french fries, dirty diapers and who knows what else, and living life on the edge, the edge of a nervous breakdown every single day! lol! When I had my twins and life consisted of 3 kids under 3 things really got chaotic and the dreams of things I had planned for my life were so far out of my head. I was just in survival mode. But in that survival mode was when I started loosing sight of my purpose and bitterness started slowly making its way into my life.

Being a stay at home mom was something I never planned for myself. It has been the hardest job I have ever had but one of the best jobs in the world. I am so blessed I get to be with my kids at all times, but the ups and downs of motherhood are so hard. For a while I felt like I was supposed to enjoy this job 24/7 and hide my feelings of frustrations. I was never supposed to complain because some people would do anything to be in my place. I am also Southern - You keep THOSE feelings to yourself hun!!!!! 

Then I started feeling guilty for being so depressed and lonely while I was with the kids, the most precious blessings the Lord had ever given me. My bitterness grew and grew. Whether you are a working mom or a stay at home mom, the “mom guilt” can eat you alive! 

Was this what I was called to do? This was my purpose? Being surrounded by people who were much smaller than me who said “no” and “mommy” 24/7 was starting to drive me totally mad. 

Many times I felt like I had lost my purpose, there was NO plan for my life other than taking care of kids and I just went thru the motions day by day, not enjoying the things in this life that I have been given because I was so mad that it had not been what I thought it would be. 

This whole year the Lord has really been speaking to me to make me realize how important it is for us to use EVERY moment of our life for him. As I've mentioned before in other blog posts, 2016 was a hard year for me and I just knew 2017 was going to be 100% better. Things continued to far from where I had planned them to go and ,on and off, I have had some hard days! But no matter what is going on, I've learned its all about our story and how our story can help others. 

A while back I started reading about Esther in the bible. Esther was Persia’s Queen. She was just an ordinary girl but had an extraordinary purpose. She was a Jew but was sought out by the King of Persia as his bride. Mordecai, the leader of the Jews, encouraged Esther to hide her faith from the King and her advisors so she did. Very long story short, the order had been given for all the Jews in Persia to be killed. Even though Esther was Persia’s queen, she did not know if she could make a difference. But Mordecai, recognized that Esther had been prepared uniquely by God for this crisis. Though she had doubts, he told her, “Who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” After 3 days of fasting, Esther approached the king. Her courageous actions changed the course of history and saved her people.

So how in this world does this have anything to do with me being a bitter about motherhood and feeling like all my purpose on this earth is to pass out goldfish and change diapers? Well it gives me hope and puts purpose in my moments. 

It says in the bible that even though Esther was the King's wife, she basically had to have “appointments” to see her husband. I'm sure she was very bitter. She couldn't even see her husband when she wanted. She had to wait until he had time for her! I can imagine Mitchell telling me he needed to pencil me in his schedule - hahhahaha yep, that aint happening! lol! 

I can imagine her thinking “Here I am, hiding my faith while everyone is planning on killin' all my kin folk (I picture everyone in the bible as southern, sorry lol),  I'm mad because I'm here and all this is going on and I cant do a thing about it!” I can imagine her crying out to God, thinking she had no purpose and no reason to be where she was.  But you know what she did? She was brave and she opened up about her faith at the perfect time which led to the saving of all the Jews. And God used her in the PERFECT moment. 

I LOVE Esther 4:14:

 “Perhaps you were born for SUCH A TIME AS THIS” 

Such a time as this - Wow. 

The Lord puts us in these places in our lives for a reason. Not so we can be bitter and jealous about how our life is going but so we can grow from it and help others. Who knows what divine appointments the Lord sets up for us during the day. I have this philosophy that if you are open with people about your struggles and battles they are more likely able to open up to you, therefore you are able to help each other and grow stronger in your faith. 

There are many reasons we can feel inadequate and incapable of making difference when we are walking around in the valley of motherhood. Who am I to help someone if I cant even get my act together? How can I make a difference when I haven't brushed my hair in 3 days?

We all want to live a different life than the one we have right? The grass is always greener on the other side? Haha, Sure! 

This is the enemy telling us we can never make a difference and the purpose that we have for our life is much better than the one that God has for us. 

Everyday I try to focus on Gods plan for MY life. I want to live EVERY moment with the idea that maybe that moment is what I was meant for. Whether its changing a dirty diaper or playing the same hot wheels game with my 4 year old for the 100th time, maybe that moment is important in my story, maybe these moments are what I am called to do. 

I once read somewhere that “The World is changed and lives are saved when men and women realize that they have been called “for such a time as this”

It is no accident that I am who I am and I have what I have. Everything is ordained by God in each season of life we are in. We must remember that the Lord has an appointed time for every single second of our life. He has it all written out and he has it all under control. All we have to do is surrender ourselves to him and he takes on all the rest. 

He takes the rest - I love this. 

I imagine a load being taken off my back. I imagine all the disappointments and frustrations of things not going as planned being totally taken from my thoughts and replaced by words of hope and encouragement from my precious savior. 

If we are all honest and open with each other and live EACH moment as if it is the moment we are made for, our lives on this earth can be so much better. I try daily to shift my mindset to what I can do on this earth for the Lord, not what I can do on this earth to make Ashley the center of attention and make Ashley’s life better. I want the Lord to use me and use my story help others. I want people to look at me and not see perfection but and see that God has done a work in me and continues every day. 

We all go thru highs and lows. That is why the Lord has placed certain people in our lives - He uses them to help us when we are in our pit and we can help others when they are in a pit. We can't forget what we are about and why we are on this earth. We are here to make a difference for HIS kingdom, no matter what it is! 

Bitterness can come like a thief in the night and steal so much of the joy of motherhood that the Lord has given you. Don't let it win! 

Focus on Esther. We may not be saving lives like Esther helped save all the Jews, but if we focus our lives as if we are living for the moment we were created for, we can MAKE a difference! 

God has called me to be a stay at home mom in this season of my life for a reason. He has called me to have these 3 special children for a reason. I will live EVERY moment of my life as if I am fulfilling the calling he has given me. 

Moms, don't forget you have a purpose on this earth. Raising children is one of the most divine callings the Lord can place in our lives. It is a hard job and the devil wants us to hate it. He wants us to grow bitter when our plans do no go like we wanted. He wants us to become jealous when our husbands get a silent car ride to work while we listen to VeggieTales sing "Oh Where Is My Hairbrush" for the 100th time while the kids are screaming in the car. He wants us to hide our feelings and frustrations so we can make ourselves feel inadequate.

I challenge you today to live your life as if you are fulfilling your purpose in every single moment. Motherhood is hard. We cant do it alone - You need some sisters along side you that are willing to be honest about the trials we face as moms. Find a small group! Pray the Lord will send some friends your way that can help you in this time of your life! Focus living towards your purpose!

All of us, ESPECIALLY MOTHERS, are created 
for a time such as this! 

If you are in the McCalla area and you are looking for a group of mothers to fellowship with, we would love to have you join our small group. It is an honest open group where we share our ups and downs and support each other 100% in these moments of our lives! Email me at to join!

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