Have You Seen? {February 19, 2017}

Welcome to Have You Seen? We’ll review last week and share other posts from around the web. Enjoy rest and renewal while you cozy up for some soul-food reading.

Coming soon . . . Connection Groups

Registration for Spring Connection Groups is finally here! The Connection Group Team has been busy working on graphics, preparing a facilitator guide, contacting and coordinating information with facilitators (BIG thank you to Emily Smith), and praying, praying, praying for this spring’s Connection Groups.

Why?

Because of YOU. We want you to be connected. To experience “me too.” To know you are not alone. If you aren’t sure what a connection group is, you can watch a video here. Registration will open on Tuesday at 6 p.m. EST so please take a bit of time now to look at the options and read bios.  Also note what time Wave 2 and Wave 3 will open (we want all time zones to have equal opportunity!). Know that we are praying for you and the group you will join. (We also have a special groups for moms of adult children on the field led by our own Danielle Wheeler’s mother-in-law. So, if you think your mom would benefit from knowing others like her, pass on the word!)

Last Week’s Theme: Author Interview

Married in M-Work: An Interview with Alexis Kinney by Kimberly Todd— “Twelve days after getting married, my husband and I boarded a plane for Honduras to begin our 13 months of service at a home for children in rural Honduras. The orphanage works to keep siblings together and functions as a final placement for kids who have experienced abuse with no capable family member(s) to care for them.”

How We Came to Read Shiloh {Book Club} by Amy Young— “Okay, more cards out on the table. I’m not normally the biggest fan of fantasy or allegory or whatever category Shiloh would fit in. This is also an example of God’s mercy to me, because if I had known it was fantasy, we might not be reading it and then we would have missed out on a thought provoking story.”

3 Ways Hannah Lau Contributes to the Conversation by Amy Young— “On the path of following Christ there are many joys but there are also difficulties, the Bible is not shy about the cost of discipleship, the narrow roads and doors. What perhaps isn’t discussed enough is the journey itself, the realities of the path less traveled, the moments of darkness, when God is silent, when there is pain, loneliness, confusion, or even doubt.”

Hole Mole! An Interview with Dale Frederickson by Kimberly Todd— “My mind began to compare making Mole to Christianity to my love for poetry. In the same way the honored traditional mole has developed, the ancient way of Christian life continues to develop. Blending tradition and innovation is not to be feared but wisely crafted into something compelling, something that brings more meaning and purpose to our lives.”

5 Tips for Newsletter Writing {The Grove: Author Interview} by Amy Young— “I believe there is much shame and uncomfortableness around newsletters overall; instead of adding to the shame with more “you shoulds,” my hope is that we can all feel empowered and (dare I say it) a bit excited about writing them when finished reading.”

Thank you all for a great week! Loved seeing the comments and how broad and engaged this audience is. Winners have been notified.

From Around the Web

Regret and Fear; Faith and Life

Some Lists for Expatriates

Loving Well Long-Distance: The Romantic Relationship

SINGLENESS: The Gift of Longing

So Weak and Strong

Dear Single Sister

Lean In

Malawi Mondays {Rainy Season}

When You are Getting Married…(and your teammate isn’t)

You Love the Person Who Will Use it Next

I’m Not Faking the Joy

And finally, A Better Way to Think About “Self-Care”

And Now for Next Week

The theme is . . .

Here is the paradox of connection: connection involves individual parts.

Connection is a dance that requires time. Time to learn. Time to hear. Time to be misunderstood. And then time to be understood.

Connection thrives in enough space. Space to explore. Space to enjoy. Space to just be.

Connection involves change. Our understanding of a culture changes. Our views of God may broaden or deepen. Our thoughts on suffering or justice or any other host of ideas will morph.

In the end there is no one way to foster connection, there are many ways. Spend time this week exploring where your connections are strong and can be celebrated. Where are your connections showing a bit of weakening and need to be strengthened? Where are they down-right fraying under the stress of your life?

Join the discussion around connection this week in the comments, on Instagram  using #VelvetAshesConnection, and then at The Grove beginning Thursday 6pm EST. Bring your blog posts to link up. We want to hear your experiences and your thoughts!

What do you think?

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