By 3 o’clock in the morning, South Carolina native Ainsley Earhardt is out the door and on her way to a makeshift studio where she joins her “Fox & Friends” co-hosts from afar, remotely anchoring the morning show with the two men she’s usually flanked by on Fox News’ curved white couch.
But with the world moving more slowly amid the coronavirus pandemic, Earhardt’s life — like most Americans’ lives — looks a lot different. A few hours after wrapping Tuesday morning’s “Fox & Friends” broadcast, the 43-year-old anchor joined a Zoom call with Faithwire to talk about her new routine.
Surrounded by a smattering of colorful paper crafts with the soft, playful sounds of her 4-year-old daughter Hayden buzzing in the background, Earhardt talked about the importance of looking for the good stuff happening around the world because “there’s only so much negativity you can take.”
That’s why she has been so supportive of her network’s “America Together” initiative, a Fox News vertical dedicated to highlighting the good stories coming out of the coronavirus crisis. This Sunday, at 10 p.m., Earhardt will participate in a special broadcast focused on sharing stories of perseverance and faith in uncertain times.
For Earhardt, it’s about more than just sharing positive stories, though.
“Just like I’m drawn to the good news of the Bible, I’m drawn — and everyone is, whether you’re a Christian or where your faith might be — we’re all drawn to … bringing out the positive in a really tough situation,” she said.
Earhardt, who ended her six-year marriage to Hayden’s father in 2018, has endured her share of difficulties. But in each trial she’s faced, the anchor said she “knew God saw the future and I knew he had a reason and I knew that problem was gonna lead me to a much brighter place.”
“I just hold onto the hope and the fact that He sees the future,” she continued. “I don’t understand why so many are affected by this, but I trust Him and I know that He sees the future and there is a reason.”
“God is in control and God has put me in this position”
Even in such difficult times, though, politics isn’t taking a break.
Earhardt, like anyone else in the public square, is the target of intense criticism at times. On Tuesday, for example, the “Fox & Friends” co-hosts were discussing President Donald Trump’s decision Monday night to temporarily halt all immigration into the country. As she’s wont to do, Earhardt offered her perspective.
The single mother pondered aloud how the president’s temporary immigration ban could impact foreign nationals working in the U.S., noting her own au pair who helps take care of her daughter while she’s working.
Almost immediately, snarky jabs started flowing in on social media.
While Earhardt didn’t talk about that specific criticism during our call earlier this week, she offered a generous response to her detractors as she sat at her dining room table in a small Long Island cottage.
“There are gonna be people who attack me; there are gonna be haters,” she said. “They don’t know me; they don’t know my heart. I love them.”
When her faith is attacked, the Christian anchor said she and her fellow Bible study members, who are meeting right now via Zoom calls, pray for her critics.
“I’m not offended,” Earhardt added. “I know God put me in this position and I know I’m gonna be attacked, so I just try to be the best person I can be. I try to be authentic and tell the truth, and if people don’t like me for that, what do you want me to be? Something that I’m not? You can always turn the channel.”
There’s no doubt, Earhardt said, the personal attacks “are hurtful.” But she knows it comes with the territory “when you’re the No. 1 cable morning show.”
“God has made me strong, and I know He loves me”
Despite still facing the day-to-day challenges of a career she loves, Earhardt said she’s finding silver linings in the forced slow down this pandemic has caused.
While the virus’ impact on so many is devastating, it has also given Americans across the country the opportunity to spend more time with their families.
“This has been a good reminder to slow down, do the things that are important — focus on my family, focus on my faith, and the rest will just fall into place,” she said. “Things are gonna change after this. People are gonna slow down.”
So when she’s not in front of the camera, Earhardt said she’s spending time with Hayden, video chatting with her family and her small group, reading her Bible, and “listening to a lot of praise and worship music.”
Actually, Earhardt clarified, she’s been “blaring it.”
“The other is, ‘Make me a vessel,’ have you heard that one?” Earhardt asked before singing a couple bars of the popular Hillsong ballad. “I don’t care where you put me, God, just make me a vessel.”
Ultimately, even against the backdrop of such sorrow, Earhardt said it’s her faith that has carried her thus far, referencing one of her favorite verses, John 16:33, when Jesus told his disciples, “In this world, you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
She’s certain God is “gonna get us through this.”
And just like for so many other people, Earhardt said the stay-at-home orders have sparked some inspiration to figure out some new things, too.
“I’ve learned how to build a fire.”