Have You Seen? {December 28, 2014}

Welcome to Have You Seen?  Reviewing last week, sharing other posts from around the web, and getting a peak a what’s ahead. Enjoy rest and renewal while you cozy up for some soul-food reading.

Last Week’s Theme: Joy

 I Will NEVER Make Anything For Them EVER Again by Susan Cochran — “I sob onto my husband’s shoulder. ‘Why can’t I get anything right? I don’t even know what kind of food to bring to a stupid Christmas program! Why did I ever think pumpkin pie was a good idea? Why do I always feel so awkward and insecure? Why is everything so complicated here?!’”

The Practice of Being Present to God {Book Club} by Amy Young — “This turned out to be my most marked up chapter so far. I love the language of viewing prayer as practicing being present to God. It breathed life into what can often feel like something we should be doing more of.”

Come, Lord Jesus by Joanna Swart — “Come, Lord Jesus, come to the ones waiting. Come to the ones in need of rescue, the ones weary, the ones expectant. Come to the ones hopeful, the ones in doubt. Come into the fear, the broken joy.”

Merry Christmas from Velvet Ashes — “We rejoice in the way that our sister-band, our global tribe has journeyed this year.  We have trekked together, gently nudging, sometimes pulling each other along, laughter and tears marking our path.  It is a game-changing gift to be in community, to have this place to share and to be understood.  So thank you for showing up here, for giving of yourself and the story He is writing in you.”

The Grove: Joy by Amy Young — “Jesus said, ‘Remember J.O.Y. is exactly what Velvet Ashes is about.’ … This is the part Jesus whispered, Amy don’t you see the beauty of Others at times that are Big Days? On your own, your Christmas is about your story and experience this year. But offered here in the space, it grows and expands big enough to hold hope and disappointment and laughter and tears and firsts and lasts. It holds the Body of Christ.”

Christmas Project Update You guys we are nearly at our goal! Together we have raised around $2,100 and have a little less than $400 to go. We’re so close! If you haven’t yet, will you join us as community in saying to the least of these, “We see you.”? See the live update and donate here.

From Around the Web

 How to pack for a month in a carry-on by Whitney — “We were notorious, in our first year here, for overpacking huge bags for week-long trips, then realizing it wouldn’t fit in the taxi or that we had to drag it up four flights of stairs at a hotel without an elevator. Not fun. So this is what I’ve learned about packing light.”

Joy Up! by China Source — If you don’t live in Asia and wonder what Christmas in a communist country is like. “Earlier this month, The Economist published an interesting look at the popularity of Christmas in China, a country that is officially atheist, and makes no room for any official celebration of the holiday.”

How to prepare for the post Christmas blues by Lina Abu Jamra — “Christmas is over for another year, and while many of us might still be in vacation mode, if you’re as old as I am you know that if you’re not careful you will soon be overrun by the post Christmas blues. So today I’d like to give you 10 easy things you can do to get through the post Christmas blues.”

Far From Change by Laura — “After Christmas comes the promise of a new year. New goals. New adventures. But sometimes the changes and adventures are occurring in others’ lives. And, once again, the joy and chaos and commotion is far away. But the accompanying grief manages to span oceans, continents and time zones.”

Facebook News

Facebook has announced that changes are happening as of January 1.  What does this mean for Velvet Ashes?  Well, we don’t know.  But a few policy changes could easily mean that Velvet Ashes posts won’t be showing up in your news feed.  And since our stats tell us that the majority of you get to our posts through Facebook, this would be bad.

So what should you do?

1.  Subscribe.  The best way to get our posts.  But make sure that after you subscribe that you are receiving emails from Velvet Ashes.  If not, check your junk/spam mail and mark all emails from Velvet Ashes as “not junk” or “not spam.”  This may need to be done in your webmail.

2.  Join us on Instagram.  There is a fun and growing group of us there sharing our cross-cultural lives, plus it’ll keep you up to date on what’s happening at Velvet Ashes.

3.  Find us on Twitter.  If you’re not on Twitter, we get it that the Twitterverse can be baffling. Check out this beginners guide, give it a whirl, and you may find out why Twitter is the way to go.

And Now for Next Week

The Theme is…



This week is one of the best times of the year here at Velvet Ashes!  Last year we joined up with One Word 365, and had an incredibly rich time of sharing and bonding amongst SO many of us.

What is One Word 365?  It’s a movement of people that are saying,

Choose just one word.

One word that sums up who you want to be or how you want to live. One word that you can focus on every day, all year long.

We’re sharing this week how our One Words went in 2014.  We want to hear from you!

Never had a One Word?  Now is the best time to choose one!  Seek Jesus this week.  Ask him what word he wants to press into your soul in 2015.  Then join us at The Grove beginning Thurs. 6pm EST.

Can’t wait to ring in the New Year with all of you and our One Words!

Photo Credit : Gratisography

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