July 8, 2016


They weren’t born in the same city, or to the same mother. They don’t have the same DNA or ancestor line. They both have curly hair, but one is black and one is blonde.

They didn’t always know they would be related.

But once they found each other they knew they were meant to be family. They call each other sister every morning and every night.

They hold hands while they sleep—and sneak into each other’s twin beds—because they love each other. They are sisters.

Some might say they are naïve, but I would say these two are right. There isn’t a blood test—or a piece of paper—I would believe over this picture. They were born to be sisters.

And when God created them differently, He knew they would find love for each other anyway. He wants us to love. He wants us to love despite our differences. He wants us to find a brother, even in those who don’t look the same. He wants us to live with grace, even when we don’t see eye to eye. He wants us to see beauty, even when we are tempted by hate.

Guns were created to unite and protect—now all they seem to be doing is drifting us apart. Long ago wars were fought in honor of a country, now nations turn against themselves. The wars are no longer far away. They are in our back yards, our own cities, and even in the walls of our own homes.

We live in a time when we learn to protect ourselves, not each other.

So where are we safe? If everyone who is different than us is seen as an enemy . . . guess we really are alone. And then we wonder why our marriages fail, our children hurt, and our babies walk into schools with guns.

Because our enemy—our real enemy—turns us against our brothers. So instead of fighting him, we fight each other.

Because we are being made to believe that we are alone. He wants us to fear we have no brothers or sisters or friends. The battles he wants to get us to fight are of self-preservation, fear, and chaos—while believing we have no teammates. He wants us to feel alone, and sadly . . . we do.  

So he uses race to blind us from seeing our connection. He uses gender differences to pull couples apart. He uses economical status to make us feel superior or insignificant. He uses eye color to take down nations. He uses religion to separate faith. He uses our uniqueness to ignite hate.

When we kill, we are not honoring our Creator—even if we dedicate our victories to Him. The battles that we can fight to honor our God will be the ones we fight against Satan. When we chose our families over our selfishness. When we walk away from a temptation to hate, or hurt, or blame. When we stop seeing in religion, race, and color. When we put down our addictions and let him heal us. The victories we can celebrate with Christ are the battles we win with grace.

Grace—the love of Christ. It is there. When we build our families instead of tear them down. When we say no to hate. When we get on our knees and pray for strength against our own pride. When we are honest, and virtuous, and bring hope. When we allow others to be who they were created to be, without seeing their differences as threatening. When we can see anyone as our brother.

Christ healed with love, and so can we.

It is not race that separates us from each other—it is our failures to see that we are all connected.

God made us unique so we don’t have to all be the same—not to make us feel alone. Don’t let it win. You are never alone. The lies of chaos and fear and being used to bring us down, but we can’t let them win. Unite.

So maybe it is hate, or envy, or pride that tells us we are not all brothers—but the truth is: we were all created from the same God.

I don’t want to sound like Miss America standing on the stage and saying that I just want world peace, but that is exactly what we need.

We all have one enemy. Fight. World. Stop fighting each other—and start fighting the real battles that are destroying us. Let us forgive each other, for all the things we do not understand. Let us stand up and find the good in one another, even when the differences are easier to see.

Let us unite our faiths, because even though they seem to make us different—if they bring us closer to our Creator, does it matter that some of us go to temples, and others gain their strength in synagogues? Faith is seeing God’s hand in your life. In the little moments, and the big ones. It is finding strength when it feels like all is lost. We have all been broken by the world, but it is faith that builds us again.

I have faith in us—and in the God who created us to be brothers and sisters.  I know He sent His Son to die for us—so all this pain and hurt and fear could one day be healed.

I plead with you world. Fight.

Fight for your marriages. Fight for your babies. Fight for yourself. And stand with God.


glenda said...

Amen! Beautiful post!

paddocks said...

Perfectly said! Cutest picture ever!

Anonymous said...

absolutely love everything you wrote!! So very true

Starrynight620 said...

Love, love, love this, Ashley and Shawn!

Anonymous said...

Another great commandment I give unto you , Love one another as I have Loved you !!
We all need to stand together and love one another and be their for each other , not killing , or hating just because the world wants us too !! God his our Father and we are his children let's show him we believe in him,love him and not let Satan !

Mary said...

I cannot believe you only have 5 comments on this! It is only because everyone is speechless. You are an inspiration, a light and a leader. Keep leading because the world needs you. Your story made you famous to give you the platform to speak your beliefs and share your testimony. You have a difference to make in this world first to your six beautiful children and to many many others. Thank you for being you. Always keep being you. Love you Ash!

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