Tonight former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee had as one of his guests, Ashley Smith Robinson on his show of the Fox News network.
Ashley Smith Robinson
Who is Ashley Smith Robinson? Remember the Atlanta, Georgia hostage hero? Here is a description of Ashley Smith as she was known then, from her own blog:
“By her own account, Ashley Smith Robinson is far from an angel or a hero. Yet today, her face is known around the world as the single mother who persuaded Brian Nichols, Atlanta’s courtroom killer, to surrender to police. Nichols called Ashley “an angel sent from God”, but, ironically, it was Ashley’s less-than-angelic past that allowed her to convince him to face justice.”
Huckabee had drawn from her interview something that I hadn’t heard before. The fact that during the hostage crisis, Ashley was battling her drug demons and the killer had asked her for drugs which she gave to him. (According to her bio on her blog, she had given the killer her own stash of methamphetamines.)
It was this young woman’s many interviews with the media that struck a fevered interest in Rick Warren’s already best selling book, The Purpose Driven Life. Ashley was in day 33 of the 40 day spiritual journey in this book, at the time of the courtroom killing/hostage crisis. It was from this chapter that she read to the killer. It was titled: “How Real Servants Act” based on Mark 10:43 and Matthew 7:16:
Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you shall be your servant. Mark 10:43
You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? Matthew 7:16
Although a Christian since a young child, Ashley had gotten into trouble as a teenager which continued through her adult years. It was her addiction to methamphetamines which made her temporarily give up custody of her daughter to her aunt.
What struck me with this interview was Ashley sharing her complete brokenness to God. She was battling an addiction she wanted no part of and it was her revelation of the following that led her to just give her all to our Lord:
“For a long time I believed I had to be perfect before I came to God and He would make me right but that wasn’t what it was. God wanted to make me right on His own. He didn’t need my help, He just needed my garbage!”
Ashley had prayed to stop the drug use and her Aunt who had her daughter had actually even prayed that either her niece make some serious changes or the Lord take her home! So during the hostage drama with the killer, Ashley began to think her Aunt’s prayer was about to happen – that she would die at the hands of this killer because she hadn’t changed! But during the crisis Ashley said she prayed for God’s direction in everything dealing with this killer. The rest of the story is shared on her bio here.
No matter one’s personal views of Rick Warren, or Ashley giving the killer drugs, her own personal battles – the one thing that stands out for sure is that Ashley recognized that she needed help and couldn’t do it alone. She recognized the power of our Lord in helping her overcome her addiction. She recognized that she didn’t have to be perfect – to be upright before coming to God. That simple message is what could help so many others come to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Come as you are and trust Him to change you! But the first step is always the desire to change. To come to God while yet desiring the same old lifestyles is not “change” at all. Just dressing the old to look like new! Ashley had a very real desire to change. She poured herself into God’s word and it was His words that took hold of her life and changed her.
The whole hostage crisis was a part of God’s plan to bring about a radical change in Ashley – and how she changed! (see her bio above)
Whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life – John 4:14
Listening to this interview was very inspirational, a very powerful reminder that if we allow God, He can tackle any of our own personal demons. Sharing this with those who want a relationship with God but think that they have to be “good” first, will bring them peace to know that they just come as they are, “garbage” and all – and allow God to change them!
God welcomes the request!
But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord. – 2 Corinthians 3:18
Order Ashley’s book: The Unlikely Angel – a New York Time’s bestseller!