Most people that know me don’t know my story.
So I thought I’d finally share my experience, hoping that others might hear their own silent struggle in my words and know that what they secretly hope for, is truly possible to live.
For over 30 years, I believed that Hard Work was a godly virtue – that I had to work hard to have good relationships, that I had to work hard to earn money, that I had to work hard to be a good Christian, that I had to work hard to be considered worthwhile.
I knew hard work didn’t earn me salvation, but I did believe it was required for everything else: success in relationships, finances, and business – as well as God’s favor, attention, pleasure, protection, and blessings.
I believed that if I wasn’t working hard, I was sinful.
I saw God as an authoritative, oppressive figure whose holiness required the nth degree of me.
I felt like I had walked joyfully expectant through Heaven’s gates at salvation – only to feel trapped in it for the rest of my life as I struggled tireless to be considered worthy enough to get to enjoy the benefits of being in that Kingdom.
“How could this ‘gift’ require such a high cost?”
So I strived to check all the right boxes off the list of do’s and don’t’s in the spiritual, physical, relational, and business aspects of my life.
However, I discovered that the more one does, the more that is required: that whatever one has accomplished is somehow always shy of quite enough.
I discovered that it’s a universal principle that whatever one does to obtain something is the very thing that is required to sustain it.
So essentially, I discovered that like breeds like – that hustle simply breeds more hustle.
Ten years ago, I began work as a turnaround business consultant, helping to turn companies around within weeks to save them from bankruptcy or help them go from local to national at breakneck speed.
So my daily work consisted of being responsible for quickly making high-dollar, high-impact decisions in extreme, intense situations that affected people’s livelihoods…
…Working up to 21 hours in one shot, going home to shower and sleep for a couple hours, and be back at work 4 hours after I’d left.
I truly loved my work but didn’t understand how I could love and hate something so much at the same time.
I was very good at my job – and I grew to resent that. I grew to resent being desired for my skillset – because the only way I knew how to operate was out of strife, hustle, hard work.
I burned out in only 2 years. Then spent the next several years trying unsuccessfully to recover….before burning out a second time.
People don’t burn out doing evil. They burn out trying too hard to do “good.”
For the first time in my life, I rebelled and told God, “No. I quit. In all areas of my life. I won’t do this anymore.”
And God surprised me by responding – “Finally!”
It was then that He began taking me on a journey to learn that He died so that I could live and work from a place of rest, sustained on the goodness of HIS character and not mine.
That my relationships, finances, and business are given, built, and sustained in the abundance described in Matthew 7:7-11…
That while He would allow me to hustle instead if I wanted to, He offers me the option of building an even more successful life and business from a place of REST…
That He is a Good Father.
So I abandoned the Hustle, the Grind, the Hard Work.
Others can have it.
I am now living and working from a place of rest, making decisions based simply on the fact that God loves me and will provide for me based on the goodness of His character.
I wake up each morning to see Him smiling adoringly at me. I make a decision in business, and see Him smiling adoringly at me. I make a mistake, and I still see Him smiling adoringly at me. It's a new world. A new existence. A new way of living and working. And I didn't do anything to earn it.
I watch Him do amazing things in my relationships and business that I didn't work for.
And I now teach my clients how to make the same beautiful transition from the oppressiveness of hustle to the freedom of rest.
To help others shift in real-time in real situations into the same freedom and place of Rest that I abide in, I provide a 1-month Rest Intensive program working 1x1 with me as well as provide an ongoing FB community for Christian business owners & entrepreneurs that just know in their spirits that both life and business as a Christian “shouldn’t be this hard.”
People that chose to make this life-transforming shift have all come to me in varying degrees of jadedness and emotional or physical exhaustion from trying desperately to figure out what God wanted so that they could give it to Him, from trying to please Him enough so that their relationships, health, businesses, and ministries would be blessed. Today, each of them is walking in more freedom, greater health, and more success as they have learned to let go of the hustle God hadn’t even required of them in the first place. They are choosing to believe they are who He says they are – sons of God who only have to RECEIVE goodness in their lives as He freely gives it to them because HE is good. They do nothing to earn it and can’t do anything to lose it.
If any of this resonates in your spirit, feel free to private message me through my personal Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/ashley.nicole.one.with.him) and private message me to find out more about the Rest Intensive and how to be part of a community of people that believe like you do and have committed to support each other as we continue to choose to live and work in God’s promised Rest.