Pinpricks of Light {The Grove – Presence}

 

Our Not Alone Campaign is almost finished here at Velvet Ashes! If it’s been on your heart and on your to-do list to make a donation to partner with this ministry, to empower and encourage women serving around the world, then this is a final little nudge to give before the end of the year.

As we look at the dawning of a new year, there’s a great sense of anticipation for what 2018 will hold for Velvet Ashes. This past year was a pivotal year. It was a year in which we said, “Ok, Lord, we’re ready to move beyond the ‘new venture’ stage. Show us what that means and then take us there. And he did. He opened doors and provided connections beyond what we ever imagined.

We’re eager for all the behind the scenes work to flow out into fruition this coming year. We made a budget on faith that God will provide for what he’s calling us to, and then we turned to you with the Not Alone Campaign. It’s the one time this year that we said, “Can you give so this ministry can be?”

The stories that have come with the giving this past month, they are leaving us in awe.

“We lost 60% of our business this year, but we’re still giving.”

 “I’ve been serving as a single on the field for decades. This ministry is where I want to give my money.”

“Here’s my monthly commitment. I plan to increase it as soon as I can.”

Do you know why these people give? Do you know why the Velvet Ashes team gives our time, energy, and finances for this ministry? Because this place is a watering hole for thousands of women who are bringing the kingdom of God to the corners of the world.

Do you realize that we’ve never really shared what it is that all of us are doing around the world? This place has always been more about the state of your heart than the work of your hands, but how encouraging would it be to hear from all of us, to know the kingdom work that is happening through the women of this community?

I don’t know about you, but there are days when I feel like all of my attempts to shine God’s love feel like the tiniest pinprick in this huge world of horrific needs.

But then I remember that I am not alone.

This place called Velvet Ashes, this sisterhood community, reminds me that I serve a God who is with us, among us, for us and through us. Together we are thousands of tiny pinpricks, and light is breaking through.

God is bringing his kingdom through all of us. We are each bringing bits of shalom to the places we live.

So share with us below. Where in the world are you, and what are you doing there? If you need to share anonymously, you are welcome to do that.

Sharing how God is bringing his kingdom through the women of this community encourages not only us, but it speaks volumes to those who are wondering how investing in a “women’s blog” impacts God’s kingdom across the world.

Perhaps you feel like your work, doesn’t qualify as “world-changing.” Oh, but that’s the joy. None of us are world-changers. We merely bear the One who is. And this God of ours, he has no hierarchy of locations or ministries that matter. If anything, it’s upside down to whatever we’re inclined to think.

So let’s share freely, all comparison set aside. We’re here to rejoice at every pinprick of light, confident that your calling is yours and mine is mine. We are each of us following his Presence in our lives. God extinguishes darkness through our pinpricks, one day at a time.

Tell us what you’re doing, and if you’d like, tell us how it’s going. What do you sense God is calling you to in 2018? What challenges are you struggling with? We’d love to pray for each other. That’s what this place is for. We’re a safe place to share with people who understand, with people who will remind you you’re not alone.

If you haven’t already joined the community in giving to the Not Alone campaign, we invite you to give and help us meet our goal. The campaign ends at midnight Dec 31, Pacific Standard Time.

[totaldonations-progress-bar id=”19498″ button=”yes” button_text=”Give Now to the Not Alone Campaign”]

What a gift it’s been to walk together in 2017. Here’s to all God has for us in the year ahead!

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This is The Grove and we want to hear from you! You can link up your blog post, or share your practices, ponderings, wisdom, questions, ideas, and creative expressions with us in the comments below.

What is stirring in you during these reflective final days of the year? Link up your blog posts to share.

 

Tag your Instagram photos with #VelvetAshesNotAlone to share how God has met you through Velvet Ashes.

Here’s our Instagram collection from this week using #VelvetAshesNotAlone. You can add yours!

 

And share on this week’s theme of “Presence” with photos tagged #VelvetAshesPresence.

Here’s our Instagram collection from this week using #VelvetAshesPresence. You can add yours!

9 Comments

  1. Barbara December 28, 2017

    Hello. I am a M in Nicaragua, in a place called Chichigulpa. I am 68 years old and God called me 7 years ago, after my husband passed away. My passion is sharing the Gospel. It is hot, and sometimes when I read the posts here, I laugh because I understand. I am a widow who serves as part of a small organization, but I come alone. It is so good to know other women serve also. God bless you. My M director at my church suggested I link with you.

    1. Grace L December 29, 2017

      Barbara, my heart is warmed to hear your story. I am 73 and serving in Asia in a rural location. I started out as a single in my mid-fifties and married a few years later. It’s been 20 years now since I was called to overseas work, and these have been the best years of my life. May the Lord give you many more years on the field and may the next 7 years being even more fruitful than your first.

  2. Patty December 29, 2017

    I serve in Asia, focusing on training and development of the people in our organization. I also provide coaching and train coaches who work cross culturally.

  3. JulieB December 29, 2017

    I serve in Asia – in member care. So fun to see I am not alone as a “senior” here in our “second careeer”.

  4. Gretal December 30, 2017

    I serve in Ghana with my husband as a church planter among the Gonja tribe. Velvet Ashes has been so encouraging and inspiring. Thank you for what you do!

  5. Spring December 30, 2017

    Thank you Velvet Ashes for connecting me at a time where I felt lonely and disconnected. Thank you for introducing me to others “like” me. Thank you for helping me feel not alone.

    My husband and I serve in Belize. We work with the Deaf population. Our first commitment is to the church that was started in our town. My husband also works with the school system to develop Deaf education, and interpret for Deaf (at their jobs and medical appointments). I homeschool our kids, work at learning ASL, and serve on a medical team every 3 months.

  6. Bethany December 31, 2017

    I spent 4 years teaching in the mountains of Honduras. Velvet Ashes was a lifeline there, and the first time I found the retreat, it came at a time I felt like I couldn’t go on and gave me a fresh wind. Now God has called me back to the States for I don’t know how long, and it hasn’t been an easy transition. I still love hearing from my world-wide sisterhood throughout the week, knowing that there are many who are still serving across the world, but there are some who have been “recalled” for various reasons, and that’s okay, too. We still share the experience of loving a people not our own and being forever changed. Thank you, VA, for everything you do.

    1. Barbara December 31, 2017

      When I first went to Nicaragua, God called me back to The States for what turned out to be 3 years. He called me back to Nicaragua in 2015 and I am heading back after furlough in January.. It doesn’t always make sense and it was very difficult to adjust but God is good. Bethany, I understand.

    2. Spring December 31, 2017

      Bethany you are right some are called back. Often that transition is more difficult. Praying for you on your journey

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