Thursday, June 14, 2018

Flashlight-less Wanderer


It's been nearly a year since I've written on this blog...or been a blogger?

To be honest, that word...blogger...which was so much of my identity in years past, doesn't really seem to quite fit anymore. The blogging world has become so saturated, that I feel the last thing anyone really needs is another girl telling you where you can click to buy her cute outfit. Don't get me wrong.....I love makeup and clothes and all the girly things in this life....I mean, I have friends who know me at Sephora - I just don't think that's my calling anymore. 

I had big plans to write about all the things that have been happening but not until the grand finale...the miracle....all the hopes and dreams fell right.into.place. And until then, I moved this blog to a notebook solely for my eyes and God's alone.

Probably not my bravest move but it can be a little scary to share when your content has previously circulated around the greatest face masks of all time and Miley Cyrus's obsession with oddly-placed tattoos. But probably more so because I received my fair share of negative feedback and I tend to go all "bye Felicia!" when I'm hurt. So off the grid we went.  

And it's only been recently in looking through that notebook that it's brought me back here. Perhaps to share what I've learned....am learning still....in the "valley" as we've come to call these places of waiting or dread or sorrow or suffering or sickness.

On the day in and day out, it can feel like you're in the same place, stagnant, unchanging. But in looking back over months and months and years and years of words, it becomes much clearer to see where you've grown....how much you've grown....and times feel you've grown too much!...Ok God, I get it, you're stretching me and growing me. But I am not laffy taffy, enough is enough! 

I've found that we (I) tend to balance God's ability with our reality. We encourage one another to just trust God with the situation but we counter that with our low expectations, disappointments from our past, our doubts that He would actually care about our desires, or our need to help Him out some and move things along.

But time after time...even when my thoughts and fears have run so wild, I have found that there is nowhere He has brought me where He hasn't been there to catch me. It can feel a lot like free-falling or being dropped off in the woods with no GPS or flash light.  (I come from a family where flashlights, milk and masking tape (do they even make that still?!) were life essentials, never to be without...I'm not kidding - I am the current owner of 7 flash lights. There's no stocking that can't be stuffed with a flashlight!) 

And I'm much more of the planner type. I have questions! I need to know where we're going, what we'll do when we get there and where we can stop for snacks. Yet God is making me more of flashlight-less wanderer day by day. 

So outside of this miracle, in this valley the things I have learned, the things gained only by experience, the things that keep showing up in that notebook are here to share:

Choose Joy each day (even in the midst of sorrow)
Rest in knowing He is faithful; He has been and He will be again
Trust in miracles even when you see absolutely nothing miraculous in front of you
Know that His goodness is unshakable

With Love,
Ashley

4 comments:

Navia said...

I'm glad you are doing well. I think that we are in a similar place with blogging. There are still some bloggers who write with substance but many are becoming more fashion and fluff oriented. We all get to the point of where we need to step away from blogging and process who were are and exactly blogging brings to our lives.

Hope to see you posting again soon.

Caley-Jade Rosenberg said...

YAY!!! It makes my heart so happy to see you pop up on my feed.
Welcome back sweet friend, I've missed you - and what beautiful words x

Angelynn Glover said...

���� Hugs!

Rebeca Valencia said...

Thank you for this post! I can definitely relate to this as I have stopped writing for some time now due to many life changes. However, I'd like you to know that you were one of the few individuals who inspired me to create my own blog and write about anything that came to mind. It seems like many blogs now have a specific focus (makeup, fashion, beauty) but I always felt like you spoke about anything and everything that came to mind and that truly inspired me! Thank you! Hope you continue to post more often.

Hugs from Chicago.