Friday, April 6, 2012

Me, Jesus, Nick Lachey And Everything In Between



My dear friend Andi recently wrote a post on Easter that prompted me to share with you all.
I have briefly on this blog mentioned my story. That the person I used to be and the person I am now are literally night and day of each other. That if you knew me then, you wouldn't recognize me now. That if you know me now, you wouldn't believe who I was then. That I'm too afraid, ashamed, embarrassed, to share my story. Recently I have been prompted to share my story on more than one occasion. And even though my story is one of redemption, I'm afraid I will be judged... that Hubby would maybe be judged... by who I used to be.

That I was a sinner. And not the I-didn't-read-my-bible or the I-ran-a-red-light kind of sinner. The I-have-hurt-so-many-people-including-myself-and-done-things-I-never-imagined-I-would kind of sinner. As I type this now, I am still too ashamed and embarrassed to publicly chronicle the person I was.

But as I read Andi's post, I was reminded that even when I was that person
I was loved by God.
And God,
the perfect, holy, pure, creator of the universe,
He knew every single part of me. He knew all the bad things I had done. All the hurt I had caused. All my deepest and darkest secrets.
And he loved me anyways.
More earthshatteringly unbelievable than that,
That as he was up on that Cross, He was specifically thinking of me.
Me.

AND YOU.
That I didn't have to live like that anymore.
That I was loved
redeemed
cherished

That it was ok that I had stumbled, hurt people, done things I never thought I would. That I could give it all over to Jesus. That he had already born the weight of all those awful things
and I was forgiven.
Do you believe this?

I didn't.
I thought it was silly.
That I was too smart
too self sufficient
The maker of my own destiny.

But I was wrong.

And even though it had to happen on the side of the road
in a car alone
listening to a song I had never heard before
written by Nick fricking Lachey
(really God, Nick Lachey?)
I finally admitted to God
that I was broken
and faded
and half the(wo)man I thought I would be
and that I couldn't understand why He would love me or want me or how my life could ever be anything good
But that I would give it ALL over to Jesus
and He could have what's left of me.

I'd ask that you just search
explore
ask
question
imagine the possibility
that there is more to this life
that there is happiness
hope.

That God wants you.
You.
Me.
Nick Lachey.

That maybe what Jesus did on that cross today, all those years ago, was specifically for you. That maybe this year you would use Easter as a time of reflection. That you would watch this video and  try to not think about Vanessa Minnillo
hear it how I heard it all those years ago.

As a prayer to Jesus to take what's left of you
The good.
The bad.
And give you happiness, joy, comfort, everlasting life,
And everything in between.

31 comments:

  1. Awww I love this. I'm so glad you decided to talk about it. I feel like we are having one of our chats again!! You're amazing. Just amazing. Love you!!!!!

    J

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  2. i totally understand your feeling of fear of judgement. i too have the same feeling, that if people found out my past that i would be shunned and in turn my family too. i never ever thot that Jesus could forgive me for the path i chose and traveled. i talked alot and i mean A-L-O-T with my sil who aways reassured me that He already had, He forgave me before I even chose that path (i just wish people would have that same frame of thought). My defining, light bulb, break down finally got it moment when in front of charming charlies when "You Are More" from 10th avenue north came on the radio. i sat there and listened to it in its entirity, put the care in reverse and found the nearest Target, bought the CD and listened to is a gazillion more times. The guilt that I carried around since changing my path and choices and returning to Jesus lifted that day. I still carry the memories and those have weight but the guilt no longer as weight. Thank you so much for sharing what you did, makes us other shamed sinners who are scared of judgement either for us or our families a little less lonely and scared.

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  3. My story sounds very similar to yours - even though I don't know the details, I know how you feel. I hope one day you share!
    xo,
    Linds
    p.s. I love Nick Lachey :)

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  4. I absolutely LOVE this post. I definitely feel ashamed of things I've done, and am still working on becoming the person that I want to be. That Christ died for me to be. But I am confident that giving him every single part of my life was the first step. Thank you for posting this, and helping reassure me that I am not the only one who wasn't always the person I should have been. I hope you have a wonderful, wonderful Easter!

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  5. Thank you so much for sharing your heart with us. I love being able to really connect with other bloggers. This is such a beautiful testimony!

    Allyson
    http://cupcakescandycanes.blogspot.com/

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  6. So happy that you made the best decision of your life that day. :-) such a great memory for you now.

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  7. Wow Ashley! What a great post. I love it - thank you so much!

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  8. I am very proud of you for writing this. I too have felt the need to write my story so that others can see what Jesus can do when you fully submit, and allow him. Amen girl! Amen.

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  9. This is really beautiful. I am ever so thankful for the Lord making me into a new person. Happy Easter!

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  10. amAZING! i love you so much and your heart is one of the most beautiful i know! hugs

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  11. you are a beautiful person inside and out, lovely inspiring post. thank you for sharing!

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  12. Such a beautiful reminder of Gods love for each and every one of us. He is so so good. Love you!

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  13. What a beautiful post. Imagine someone loving you, me, and everyone else so much that he gave his life for us almost 2000 years before we existed. That he knew who we were (the good and the not so good) and chose to love us that much anyway. I find myself more in awe of that all the time!

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  14. So honest and genuine! You are a beautiful person inside and out :) Hope you have a wonderful Easter!

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  15. I agree with Jenna, I feel like we are all bunking together sharing our testimonies. I love you and am so proud of you! Such a great post friend!!

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  16. Wow, I don't even really remember that Nick Lachey song, but listening to it now, in the same sense that you listened to it, WOW. Powerful. I think most of your readers will be able to relate. Most of us, all of us have sinned. We are natural sinners saved by grace. I also have many shameful things that I have done, but I feel so blessed to be where I am today. Have a beautiful Easter sister friend.

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  17. Hey.

    I don't know if you'd believe it, but I know the feeling you're talking about. The, how-do-i-pick-up-the-pieces-from-all-this-destruction-that IIIII caused feeling. I, too, have been in that boat. And without mentioning it, in your words I can see what you did, just because of the way you wrote it... and if it's what I think it is... I have done it too. I TORE MY LOVED ONES APART with my sin. It was terrible. And I would never judge 5ohhubby for it... as I would hope no-one would judge my Daniel. I'm fairly certain we're on the same page here... and let's just thank goodness it's in the past!

    Not sure if you've been following my blog, but I've recently come into God's family. Finding out that He died for me and that I am important, no matter what decisions I've made is so calming. So reassuring. Such a blessing.

    You are a gift to all of us, and your words are beautiful. Getting it off your heart is all that you can do.

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  18. We've all been there... to one extent or another - You're not alone with the past that you don't want to divulge to anyone <3 Yet - like you've said - we are redeemed! :) I love it... I love the ending to this story... Which really becomes quite an amazing new beginning :) Thanks for opening up <3

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  19. I just saw your tweet about the negative comment and wanted to come see why someone would ever say anything bad about you regarding this post and I just don't get it. I get so tired of seeing all the negativity in the blog world. The blogging community is such a positive one and I'm so thankful to be a part of it. Don't let the haters hurt you because that's all they want. I love this post girl and lately I feel like I'm still struggling with the sin portion of my life more than ever. A lot of times I feel condemned like I'm not a good enough Christian even though I know that our God died on the cross to forgive everything. Sometimes I just feel like I need to be better! I love these reflections on religion that I've been seeing in the blog world lately. They are really great reminders of our Father!

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  20. Jesus' redemption is so beautiful and I'm so glad you shared your story! Hope you have a happy Easter lady!

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  21. don't be ashamed love! We are all sinners. The most important thing is that you realized things and changed your life. You're great! I know this might sound crazy, but I'm honestly so glad I found your blog. 5oh wives are very special to me and such a unique support system. Happy Easter!

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  22. thanks for sharing your story! it's beautiful the way Jesus finds us when we need Him most. happy Easter, friend!

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  23. What a beautiful post. It's so difficult to share our intimate feelings, but it's beautiful when we do as it blesses others. That's how amazing the Lord is. Works in our life to be a blessing to others. I absolutely loved this post.

    PS - I tried really hard not to think of Vanessa but as the song played I automatically thought of Nick and Jessica's show and Vanessa picking up the pieces. hahaha. hope you're having a wonderful night!

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  24. Thank you for sharing your story. It takes a lot of courage, but you are a true testament to Jesus Christ....

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  25. You have a very beautiful blog with a lot of inspiring posts! I'd like to invite you to be my friend and follow each other:)
    I also have an amazing GIVEAWAY on my blog, please check it out:)

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  26. Thank you thank you thank you.

    Beautiful words. Beautiful Saviour we worship. You've put it so simply. I have no doubt someone will read these words and feel what you're describing! xoox

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  27. You should not fear sharing your story. The only way that others are going to see and learn from us that have been broken and are now healed by Jesus, is through us sharing our story and being transparent.
    I too have been broken, sinful, hurting. And then i was forgiven. Jesus wants me to share that story with others so that they can see what He is capable of; so that they can see we are forgiven and loved.
    The fear you are feeling is satan eating away at you. Don't let him take control.
    Follow Jesus.

    Thank you for sharing just a little piece of yourself. I pray you are able to overcome that fear, to be transparent, and to share your story.

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  28. You should not fear sharing your story. The only way that others are going to see and learn from us that have been broken and are now healed by Jesus, is through us sharing our story and being transparent.
    I too have been broken, sinful, hurting. And then i was forgiven. Jesus wants me to share that story with others so that they can see what He is capable of; so that they can see we are forgiven and loved.
    The fear you are feeling is satan eating away at you. Don't let him take control.
    Follow Jesus.

    Thank you for sharing just a little piece of yourself. I pray you are able to overcome that fear, to be transparent, and to share your story.

    And oh yes, Nick Lachey. You see, God can use anyone and anything, including you, to bring people to Him.

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  29. Wow what a beautiful heartfelt post and invitation to seek the one who loves and died for each one of us.What a great reminder of the fact that he meets us right where we are. I appreciate your courage and willingness to share this. I love how you shared your story to God's glory! what a blessing to all who read this! Following you now!

    Tamika @ www.notimefortea.com

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