Hello! My name is Heather, or Ashley, or whatever I happen to be called in the local
tongue where I am living. Who am I?
Well, firstly, I am a child of the most high God. Anyone who knows what that means understands that that statement describes my identity, worldview, purpose and future. Following that I’m a wife and mother with equal enthusiasm. My family is awesome… really awesome.
In many ways I’m a typical child of the eighties, grown up now and interested in philosophy, politics, worldview, human rights and making the world a better place. That said, I live a very a-typical life. Our family has lived, worked and traveled in five continents. Once we drove from northern Michigan, USA to Argentina, South America in a 15 passenger van, with our two dogs. For a brief time we lived in a brothel/hostel in Panama where we helped forced sex workers get off the streets. We’ve taught street children in northern Argentina to read. We’ve also had malaria, chikunguna, mrsa and a mess of other nasties. My husband has had salmonella half a dozen times, but then, he just can’t resist weird street food.
We’ve debated the existence of God with students at American universities and sat in the dirt with orphan children in the refugee camps of East Africa. We’ve slept in beds, hammocks, on floors and couches. We’ve hiked through mountains to visit remote undocumented people groups and seen things that cover the pages of National Geographic Magazine. We’ve eaten sushi, posho and bugs. We’ve lived in some of the largest cities of the world and some of the most remote villages.
The God of the Bible has a bad rap for being a fun killer, boring and even cruel. But people have got Him all wrong. Since devoting our lives to follow Jesus, our family has lived the most amazing, crazy, exciting, dangerous and beautiful life. Our life philosophy is pretty simple: He says go, we go. The more impossible it seems, the greater the adventure will be.
My girls occasionally have a difficult time fitting in with Westerner kids. When you’ve been where we’ve been, done what we’ve done and seen what we’ve seen, it can be challenging to say the least. But the thrill of seeing people all around the world set free from those things which are holding them down, the gratification of knowing you did your best, the fulfillment of varied and deep friendships, those things make the hard stuff completely worth it.
We all have to make our own way in this world, but my family and I could never be happy chasing the American dream; God simply didn’t wire us that way. I started this blog with hopes of offering inspiration, entertainment, humor, perspective and encouragement. It’s not your typical missionary blog. I’ve no interest in painting myself out to be a superhero or saint. I’m going to be blunt and honest about our day-to-day lives: the good, the bad, the struggles, the disasters and the triumphs. I hope it inspires some to break out of the chains of other’s expectations and judgments and live in the freedom of who they were created to be. And if all you get from this blog is a laugh at my expense, that’s ok too. Either way, I’m glad you stopped by, God bless!