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Bob concludes our series on the Great Sadness by speaking truth to one of the major contemporary cultural heresies called  "Prosperity Theology."  At it's essence Prosperity Theology promises health, wealth, and wisdom - the idea that you'll have everything you need as you journey towards upward mobility. But the prosperity that the Gospel offers is not financial but spiritual, and often this comes through great suffering. Nowhere in the Gospel does Jesus guarantee financial prosperity. People's notion of God tends to fall apart when they encounter great pain and suffering, due to our distorted notion from the prosperity gospel. Bob illuminates how following Christ is more often a path of descent than ascent, and reminds us that Jesus himself was willing to go there. Will you join him?

 

 

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This week we're joined by our good friend Amanda Ferree (previously Amanda Martin). Amanda's life took an unexpected turn a few years ago when she discovered that her second son Miles had cystic fibrosis. Amanda opens up about how it has affected her faith, marriage, day-to-day life, and more. Amanda's committed involvement to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and her courageous spirit to give Mile's a normal life show how the great sadness can transform us into greater depths and deeper love.

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This week we're joined by Sister Robin Stratton, a dear friend and spiritual guide to many of us in the Meadow community. When Sister Robin was 45 she learned her brother had a very intense form of cancer. She flew to New Mexico and spent his final months with him, physically caring for him and lovingly embracing his end-of-life together. Sister Robin talks of the moments proceeding his passing, "The veil was so thin...part of me had gone with him into the Kingdom of God. And I knew there would never be a moment we would be seperated again." 

 

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“My ears had heard of you but now I see you with my eyes” - Job. Scott’s concluding week on the Porch takes us on a journey of his time with the Northumbria Community in England. Scott experienced a healing workshop on grief that opened up new doors for his processing the loss of Peggy. Scott’s story is multifaceted and reminds us that the Great Sadness impacts every aspect of our life: our identity, our job, our family relationships, etc. Scott talks about the hardship and importance of letting go and releasing, reminding us that at some point, one can being to move from mourning to dancing.

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This week Scott shares about Peggy's passing, and how the grief intensified the following two years after her death. Scott recently took an unexpected pilgrimage along Saint Cuthbert's Way through the Scottish and English country side. He ended up in Northumbria, a Christian community whose Celtic Daily Prayer Scott had been using for some time. Christ has been transforming this season of loss as Scott embraces that through his great pain he is coming to a place of greater intimacy with God.

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Bob's longtime friend Scott Buresh joins us to share about his wife's journey with cancer. Scott and Peggy were married for nearly 30 years when they discovered she had glioblastoma. Their remaining ten months together were incredibly difficulty, but Peggy's spirit was strong and joyful. This is part 1 of 3.

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Bob shares about how he coped with the pain of losing his beloved daughter Marcie. Bob reminds us that when we are going through great tragedy and sadness to remember 3 main things: God is with you (He is your Father), learn to live in the present moment, and learn to enter into the sadness. Teresa of Avila once said that "all suffering is God's suffering," and that we can find hope in a God who has taken on the likeness of a human and compassionately suffered alongside mankind. 

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Pt 2 of 2 - Jeanne Arnold shares about life after losing their beloved daughter Marcie in 2002. Five years after Marcie's death Jeanne still wasn't at peace. She then experienced God's presence telling her to let go of her questions and fears, and to trust that Marcie was at home in heaven.

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15 years ago Bob and Jeanne unexpected lost their daughter Marcie, who was 23 at the time. Their lives changed instantly as they entered into the Great Sadness. Bob shares about the night that he received the news that Marcie passed away. It was the hardest night of his entire life - the Great Sadness entered with such finality and confusion. Stay tuned for the following weeks where Bob and Jeanne talk about how they coped with this loss and the hope that they discovered in the midst of suffering.

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Jeanne Arnold shares about the unexpected and painful death of her and Bob's daughter, Marcie, who passed  away in 2002 while living in South Carolina. Everything about Bob and Jeanne's life changed in an instant when they received that late night phone call with the terrible news. In the midst of such tragedy, friends and family showed up to support Jeanne and Bob and the Arnolds. It's been a long spiritual journey since then as Jeanne's story holds the tension of pain and sorrow with great hope and healing. This is part 1 of Jeanne's story.

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