It only took me 30 years…

Do you ever feel like you are just kinda half way living? Like you know there is something more, you know you can be more… but what is that feeling? Is this a feeling of unhappiness or discontentment?

For me, it was something I was in constant prayer about. I didn’t want to feel discontent because how could I feel discontent with all that have. A life filled with more than I need, beautiful healthy children, and a marriage full of love and life. Me, how could I want more?Steven Leyva Photography (47 of 121)Steven Leyva Photography (123 of 121) (1)

I do believe God has created us all with a purpose. Designed perfectly in His eyes, fully equipping us with gifts, only a master maker could give.

Ephesians 2:10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.

Last year I turned 30. A mother of 3 children under the age of 7. Homeschooling 2 of them full time. Life was good. Life was great actually. But then we went to Nor Cal to visit some family friends for a few weeks. I talked with a woman I admire dearly, a mentor if you will. I told her my desire to do something “more”. What did that even mean? Well from the time I can even remember, I have always had a creative side, an entrepreneur just searching for anyway to make money. You could find me 5x a week having a ‘sale’ in my room, selling items to my mother.. .that she had purchased for me in the first place. Buying and fixing up and then reselling. Garage saling, craigs-listing, cleaning and organizing friends rooms when I went to their house, rearranging… my goodness the rearranging started so young. I should have known where it was all gonna lead, just on that. ANYWAY, you get the point. So let me get back to it. While talking with this mentor, she gave me the confidence and courage to just start. She also gave me some really good advice. She said “Be you. If you are yourself, authentic, and genuine… people will see that and love that.” OK… easy enough right? Kinda…
I started my Instagram. Ah so exciting.. it was so fun to share all of my deal finding finds, my ideas and home decor. I loved this feeling. The praise wasn’t bad either… I mean who doesn’t love to hear good things about themselves. (SIDE NOTE: Let me tell you my friends, beware of this hidden monster, because its a creeper and you won’t even know it’s hit ya until its kinda too late. Hearing good things about yourself and letting it get to your head is very dangerous… pride is nasty. And just as nasty is the feeling of inadequacy when you don’t get all that praise. May I recommend a couple of remedies for this? Prayer, good friends to keep you grounded, the book “Uninvited”, and again step back and pray… refocus your priorities.)
Ok back to the story, I then started a blog. After a few months I started to delve in deeper and found out how much I LOVED sharing. The more I shared, the more I grew confident in who I am and what I was doing. It was like I had this well inside of me I didn’t know was there and I just needed to pour it all out… kinda like right now, hehe.Steven Leyva Photography (85 of 121)
Every month started to open up a new page of my life and my creativity. What started out as something fun, became something that I had such a passion for and brought out gifts in me I didn’t even know I had. Which then turned into me starting a business. Wait what, I get to get paid for doing what I love? DONE!
Why did this take me so long to figure out? Why couldn’t I had done this in my 20s?? Well I think God had other plans for me. My focus in my 20s was building a strong foundation of a marriage with my husband. It was me “just” being a mom and “just” being a homeschool mom. Why? Because God wanted me there, thats why. I don’t know why things happen, I believe God wants me to just wait on Him sometimes for pure obedience, and thats ok, because through waiting, we grow. Through waiting, we stretch. What a special gift it is to wait.
As I reflect the last year of being 30, and reflect the last 30 years… my prayer for you is to be thankful for where you are at. Be content. This doesn’t mean you can’t want more, I think God designed us to have desires and wants. Just pray that those desires line up with what God wants for you… that is the best desire. Mathew 6:26 “Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?”Steven Leyva Photography (112 of 121)
This is an amazing verse to memorize and recite when you are questioning where you are at, “Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.” Romans 12:12
XO
Ashley
arrowsandbow
Photography by: Steven Leyva @stevenleyvaphoto
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7 thoughts on “It only took me 30 years…

  1. That IG fame would be scary. Some of the accounts I follow have been discussing that. You describe it so well…that tunnel you go down thinking you don’t meet the expectations of what others appear to have. I had started a home acct. for fun and actually deleted photos of our 1969 tri-level renovations because I was embarrassed that people would think I was trying to be one of them (the popular accts.)! LOL. I realized that was so stupid. Making things pretty is what I love to do! When I found out we were moving I wanted to start again…I want to document this for myself!! So I am reposting some of the changes we made here and moving to a new fix this month.

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  2. What a beautiful entry. it comes at time when I am not feeling blessed. The life I envisioned for myself is not the life I have now. I strive to live simply and with faith in all I do. Some days are full of sunshine and others the clouds of insecurity and comparison come over me. I have posted your quote “Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.” to remind me that everyone has a different path and to be accepting of it all (especially of patience)

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  3. What a great testimony! I feel like I should reread this post several times over! My thoughts were along the lines of, “I started following because of the trailer renovation and I just found so much more!” I don’t know that I’ve reached my season of “more” yet, but I know in His perfect timing I will.
    Thank you for the beautiful inspiration for trailer living! We have a trailer sitting in our back yard that is waiting for me to transform so we have a place to live when we sell our house and build! You made me excited for the challenge!

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  4. Oh this is just spot on with my life right now. The rearranging, OH how it bugs my friends and family that I can’t just leave things be haha! I’ve been wondering what the feeling of wanting “more” is for me, and many times I have wanted to start an instagram but I just don’t know where to even begin!

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