So if I can be real with you guys for a minute, I actually created this account almost three years ago. I just never did anything with it. God was dealing with me heavily at the time, but I wasn’t ready. Seriously. I was at a low point in my life and the one person that I was running from was actually the only person that I needed. GOD. I wanted to be young and free and do all of the things that my peers were doing. But He was not having that. And quite frankly I was tired of running.
By the age of 12, I knew that I was different. All of the kids my age would be into certain things and I just knew that there was trouble lurking. Some labeled me as being scary but I called it being aware or having discernment. I would be at youth conferences and events and the preacher ministering would call all of the youth down to the front for prayer. There were so many times where they would tell me that I was different because God had a special calling/plan over my life to mentor and help others. Some of the kids would look at me and start to whisper to their friends. I would be so embarrassed because I knew that they were talking about me. I got tired of hearing that I was different.
I remember on several occasions coming home from school, praying to God to just make me normal. At that age, I really didn’t know what normal was, but I knew for sure that it wasn’t me. I wanted to be like everyone but myself. And every morning when I woke up being the same ol’ Ashley, I got upset and began blaming God. I took matters into my own hands when I stopped being myself and began to be like the rest. I allowed my relationship with God to become almost nonexistent. I began to hang with the wrong crowds and do stupid things. I was losing myself and God was not pleased.
While I was running and doing my own thing, I would still hear from God. He wanted my attention, but I continued to ignore Him. I thought that I was having the time of my life, living how I wanted to live. In my eyes, I was finally normal. I had lots of friends and popularity. Life was good. I made sure to keep myself busy and entertained because I knew that God’s voice was loud and clear when I was still and alone.
And then it hit me. Those so called friends that I once had were all gone. I was no longer the center of attention. No phone calls, no texts, and no hanging out. No social media, no nothing. I was literally alone. I know that this sounds crazy, but I literally went two whole years without a single friend calling or texting me. No joke. I was isolated and alone and there was nothing that I could do about it.
I remember one night, I broke out into tears and prayed to God. I hadn’t prayed in years but I felt that I needed to do it. I had tried everything else with no relief. I didn’t know what to say or where to start, but somehow the words just poured right out of my mouth. After praying, I immediately felt restored. I slowly started going back to church, reading my Bible, and praying. I even connected with some amazing Christian friends. I had been pretending and hiding for so long, that it felt good to be myself again.
God knew that if I continued living life the way that I was, that I would have an even longer road ahead of me. The only way that He could get to me was to absolutely WRECK me. He had to take away every single thing that hindered me from hearing Him and doing His work. Isolation was just the thing that I needed. God desired my attention and He did what was necessary.
We all have different callings and purposes for our lives. It may not be shown or given to you right away, but in the meantime ask God for His guidance and His will. Continue to seek Him. Don’t be afraid to ask Him questions. Instead of me seeking and asking, I ran and tried to change the very thing that God loved about me. If He wanted us all to be the same, don’t you think He would’ve done that? We are all special and different and that’s ok. I can confidently say that I am embracing my individuality now more than I ever have. As a child I feared that something was wrong with me and that God was punishing me. I didn’t know that God created me this way for a reason.
As I mentioned earlier, I created this account years ago. God had placed it on my heart, but it wasn’t until now that I realized why I needed to do this. Growing up all I ever wanted was for someone who had gone through some of the things that I was experiencing, to be there for me. I wanted to be able to call them up and tell them about my day. Spend time with them on the weekends. Go to church. Get prayer, advice and encouragement. Someone that I could trust. Someone to comfort me and tell me that everything would turn out just fine. A mentor. I know that if I’d had a mentor things would have been different for me growing up. I thought why not be who you needed when you were younger.
So now here I am, three years later, officially starting this blog to share my experiences with you. I am in no way a professional or perfect person. But what I am is a lover of Christ and all of His people. My main purpose of this blog is to share my stories and experiences for others to know that they are not alone. Someone somewhere is fighting or has fought the exact same battle(s) as you. Let’s encourage and uplift one another.