Have You Seen? {April 26th, 2020}

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Last Week’s Theme: Beyond Myself

Preparing Your Heart to Retreat by Sarah Hilkemann—”Doesn’t that sound idyllic? Doesn’t that sound like the perfect time away? My retreat times are rarely that flawless and wonderful. Usually, my brain runs off in a million different directions and I have a hard time settling in. I turn off the internet and all sources of communication, but my unfinished to-do list nags. Plans change and I can’t go to the spot outside the city that I wanted to, or my time gets cuts short because of an obligation.”

Social Life {Book Club} by Rachel Kahindi—”It had to happen, didn’t it? Eleanor has to face her childhood trauma, but I was hoping it wouldn’t hit her this hard. Eleanor finally realized how outrageous it was to believe that she was fated to marry the musician. And she also realized that he’s not as great as she assumed he was. However, her breakdown wasn’t about not getting to meet a local celebrity. She admitted to herself that she thought he would help her to become normal. But, ‘there was no hope, things couldn’t be put right. couldn’t be put right.’ “

It’s All Beyond Me by Maria Mullet—”Our world is collectively grieving right now. Whether you’re grieving the abrupt end of a season as I am, or whether your COVID-induced grief looks different, it is grief all the same. This has brought tremendous loss to our world. Loss of life, community, access, finances, freedoms, health. Grief is a process that needs to be entered, walked through, waded into. It can’t be bypassed or ignored. So please hear me that what I’m saying next is not suggesting a bypass.”

Let’s Celebrate! by Velvet Ashes Team—”The gift you unwrap this year may look different. You may be surprised to find although it isn’t what you had hoped for, it is exactly what you needed. Through the pages of this year’s retreat you will be encouraged to find joy right where you are. You will be challenged to celebrate the goodness of your Father in quiet and personal ways. You will be asked to evaluate and protect the time you are gifted.”

From Around the Web

Surviving Infertility: The Other Side of Grief

Siblings and the Third Culture Kid Journey

Entitled to Suffer

On Instagram: A Few Reminders for Today and Where Are You Finding Beauty?

And Now For Next Week

The theme is…

We don’t want a fleeting, flimsy joy. No, we long for the kind of joy that digs deep roots and sticks around for the highs and lows and everything in between.

We want a joy that looks straight past the impossible circumstances and the stomach-punching disappointments. Joy that digs in her heels when everything feels lost and hopeless.

We want joy that goes beyond today or tomorrow. Joy that walks beside us in the hills and valleys, in plenty and in want.

This is no ordinary joy, friends.

In our current crazy world, we need a sturdy, steady joy more than ever.

Where are you looking for joy? How do you hold tight to joy when everything around you is crumbling?

We want those hard-won joy stories to overflow this week. Share the ways the Father gave you joy in the impossible, as well as in the beautiful moments. Share the simple joys that are filling your days, reminding us all to keep our eyes open. Use the hashtag #VelvetAshesBeyondJoy and come join the conversation.

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