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What About Suffering?

Welcome to Grace and Space, a weekly newsletter from the Deconstructing Mamas Podcast! GRACE for who you have been, are now and SPACE for who you are becoming and will be!

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In my past theological belief system, suffering always had a greater purpose.


It was a part of a greater plan, so God’s glory would be revealed, a refining process.


But what if it’s not?


What if suffering is just that: suffering. Painful, dark, intense, awful.


What if we just called it like it is?


Maybe we’re afraid. Afraid that if we don’t focus on the good then we will succumb to the darkness. Afraid that we aren’t good Christians if we don’t proclaim God's power and goodness in all things.


But maybe we can do both.


Maybe we can sit in suffering and be honest about the pain and the grief, while also looking to the future with hope that good things (no matter how small they feel) will come also. That suffering, though at times it feels unbearable, is a part of life, and we cannot skirt around it.


Leaning into suffering does not negate our faith. In fact, leaning in is divinely realistic and takes away the expectation that things need to change for God to be good.


On the days where I am strong enough, I like to connect the dots between the little things that help me navigate the darkness. Like friends that love and support me, sleepy snuggles from my kids, tv shows that ease the sting, medications that keep me afloat.


God is there. Nudging us towards ourselves, each other. Orchestrating opportunities for us to love ourselves, each other. Breathing hope into our nothingness.


So when it feels like hope is lost, and the darkness of suffering threatens to swallow us whole, may we have the courage to connect the dots and follow them towards hope. --Lizz Enns Petters (The Deconstructed Mama) PODCAST THROW-BACK HIGHLIGHTS #3:

We keep getting requests for "which episode deals with this or that?" for which we are really grateful. It means people are figuring out we are a podcast and that we have fantastic guests who are supporting those of us who are parenting and deconstructing at the same time (a tricky business). This week, we are highlighting FOUR more of our "throw-back episodes" that literally changed our lives and our ways of thinking about this deconstructing and parenting gig!

ALSO, SUMMER IS THE PERFECT TIME TO CATCH UP ON ANY YOU'VE MISSED! TRUSTING MYSELF with mother/daughter duo, Sarah Meassick and Esther Goetz. (EPISODE 10) In this podcast episode, Sarah Meassick, daughter of podcast host, Esther Joy Goetz (aka Esther, the Dolly Mama), takes us deep into her childhood journey of fear, anxiety and the desire to be the "good girl" and how this manifested in full-blown OCD at a very young age, reinforced and perpetuated by the rigid faith system she grew up with (which many of us can relate to).


Sarah and Esther walk through their mutual story of deconstruction, redemption and the freedom they have found in allowing themselves and each other the safety to be their authentic selves. Sarah is tender and brilliant, a combination that will have you sobbing into your tissues and cheering at the same time. BEGIN WITH THE END IN MIND with Brian McLaren (EPISODE #16) In this episode, Brian D. McLaren (yes, THE Brian McLaren), is a stalwart in the arena of faith and deconstructing. Brian wisely and warmly guides us gently through the four stages of childhood/faith and how to work through them in ourselves and in our own parenting.


Plus, you'll find out his secret passion (hint: has something to do with sea wildlife...).


Plus plus, find out what's more important than being "cool." BETTER THAN PURITY with Brittany Meng (EPISODE #17)

Our first "dive" into the toxic nature of purity culture was on this episode with Brittany Meng The Bam Blog !!


She says this:


"We need to embrace better questions when we try to help relationships thrive, rejecting shame and judgment, and instead focusing on love, respect, and boundaries that encompass the entire expression of what it means to be human and healthy."


Brittany's gentle, but very firm spirit brings both grace and truth to a subject that is tricky at best and horrific at worst. You don't want to miss the out on hearing why she believes there is something so much better than the question, "Are you pure?"


Put on your life preserver and jump right on in!!

RAISING YOURSELF with Shelly Robinson (EPISODE #11)

Shelly walks us through the very helpful and necessary idea of having to reparent ourselves as we deconstruct systems that have kept our inner child hidden, voiceless, and often wounded.


All the big picture, yet practical tips Shelly has for us on this episode will not only change the way you parent, but the way you treat yourself.


This is really big and a whole new way seeing the world and especially the relationships that matter the most to you. You will want to take notes and follow everything Shelly does and get your hands on the resources she has for you.

 



 

Latest News:

Support Us PLEASE and Join Our Private Facebook Community Don't forget to sign up for our private and exclusive Deconstructing Mamas community on Facebook for those of you who want to move to the next level with us via our PATREON platform.

At this level, for as little as $3, you can ask questions, experience a safe and welcoming community with others who are deconstructing and receive special surprises along the way from Lizz and Esther.


We've been doing this for several months now and it's been more than we could have imagined. We love it there and think you will too! Head to this LINK to sign up!!



Don't forget to sign up for our private and exclusive Deconstructing Mamas community on Facebook for those of you who want to move to the next level with us via our PATREON platform.

BIG ANNOUNCEMENT!! We would like to welcome Julie Middleton, partner to one and deconstructing mama to two, to our team! She's going to be doing all things social media and basically keeping us afloat over here in Deconstructing Mama land. We couldn't be more grateful for Julie right about. now and already have learned so much about how to fight for kindness and inclusivity in a world that struggles to do so. It's why we do what we do and remember, we need your help to keep doing it! See Patreon link above! Only $3/month to help us keep the lights on and to make sure Julie is able to get the good word out to you in Instagram and Facebook land!!

 

Resource Alert:

You totally WANT all the amazing resources Shelly Robinson has for you! From her incredible videos on Instagram to her Connected Kid Collection to her fantastic Ultimate Guide for Less Yelling and More Compassion, she has something for all the mamas out there who are trying to do this parenting journey in a healthy way, and especially how we go about raising ourselves. What does that even mean? Find all about Shelly right HERE.


 

One last thing. We want to remind you that we are so glad you are here. We wouldn't be the same without you. You will always find GRACE for where you've been and who you are now, and SPACE for who you are becoming and will be.


Carry on, our new-found friends. Welcome to the twisty-windy, full -of-adventure faith path that's laid out before us all. Love,

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