Ash and Starlight

Connecting with God, each other, and ourselves in the broken and beautiful

Ash and Starlight Book Launch Party!

Our family just settled in back home tonight from an incredible weekend in Minnesota. Yesterday, we celebrated the launch of Ash and Starlight: Prayers for the Chaos and Grace of Daily Life at Art House North in St. Paul, MN. This was the capstone on launch week. It’s hard for me to describe the matchless experience it was in recent days to receive pictures and texts from so many people I love, all sharing they’d received Ash and Starlight.

There is much marinating in my full heart right now…I’m overcome with profound gratitude, and will need to process for many weeks to come. So much beloved community – including family who flew in to surprise me – gathered to “give thanks, celebrate, and dedicate” at the launch party. It was a humbling and holy thing….to thank God, celebrate God’s goodness, and dedicate this offering.

I can’t stop reliving so many moments from yesterday. And what I’ve especially been awed by is not just the event itself, but the journey to yesterday – all the people and experiences, guided by God’s loving hands, which coalesced in bringing this book to fruition. Truly miraculous.

I sat at the piano as we sang hymns, I read prayers and reflected, and we listened together to the original recording of the musical piece, ‘Ash and Starlight – one of the earliest stepping stones toward this book.

This playlist played in the background. Lots of Sara Groves, of course….

More to come, I’m sure, about this day. In the meantime, pictures which speak a thousand words…..

Such a privilege to pen words of love to gracious friends and family again and again and again…
Programs for our time of worship and reflection
This 100 year old church was repurposed by musician Sara Groves, and her husband, Troy, with the intention of fostering creative pursuits after Christ’s passions.
Give thanks, Celebrate, and Dedicate – the handiwork of my sister-in-law, Shanna
Our foursome
My mom…
Especially meaningful to me was to discover the Good Shepherd stain glass imagery in the church. Some of my favorite texts in Scripture center here. And so did my dad’s.
Eden and Simon snarfing down star cookies
Hymns sung include: Praise Ye the Lord, Hymn of Promise, and Great is Thy Faithfulness…
The Lehn sisters, two of whom flew in to surprise me the day before the launch party. And of course, baby Joel (3 months old)
A chunk of the Lehn family….so blessed.
My aunt, Mary, and uncle TJ – dad’s brother who commissioned the musical piece of “Ash and Starlight”
Star cookies made by Emily Erickson and her mom, Gail – PERFECT – plus Costco cheesecake. Oh, and the toppings we forgot to throw together until 1 hour before leaving for the event….
When I started to give the benediction, Eden came up to join me. She sometimes does this when my husband gives the benediction at the end of our worship services in Wilmette…a sweet tradition.
Poster-child….
Also, just saw this tonight….currently a #1 release . One of the most effective things you can do right now to spread the word for Ash and Starlight to reach and bless others is to write a very brief amazon review. It can be 2 sentences!

My heart bursts….

With thanks, celebration and dedication to the Weaver of all our ash and starlight….

8 Comments

  1. I am enjoying following this journey and reading your stories along the way.

  2. Congratulations Arianne!

    I received my copy last week and read an Autumn Devotion for our First Pres choir rehearsal on Thursday night! So blessed to hear your voice in my head as I read each prayer.

    • Arianne Braithwaite Lehn

      October 28, 2019 at 4:39 pm

      Oh, that is so, so special to hear, Fran! Thank yo iso much for sharing. Much love to you, and I can’t wait to see you in December!

  3. SO DELIGHTED to see you and your family and loved ones sharing this amazing time. You have earned all the joy and accolades and excitement! Looking forward to sharing this book with many, many people. Bless you!
    Love,
    Kathy

    • Arianne Braithwaite Lehn

      October 31, 2019 at 12:33 am

      Thank you so much, Kathy!! You have been an inspiration all along the way. I nodded to you in my talk at the launch party, sharing how God used a very special mentor to nudge me toward a book proposal. YOU. Love you and bless you!

  4. Arianne,

    I received my book last week and haven’t been able to put it down. I can’t get over your eloquence and that of all those who write so effortlessly, or at least it seems like that:). I find that feeling in singing. Enjoy all of your book launches and we look forward to your sharing your poems with us in the spring.

    I sent a copy of your book to a friend who I taught with years ago. She is a wonderful writer herself. They returned to PA years ago. Right now her husband is in the hospital with complications of diabetes. They met in divinity school in Chicago. He is Catholic and a hospital chaplain. She never used her degree in Christian Ed because they have two adult special needs children.

    • Arianne Braithwaite Lehn

      November 8, 2019 at 7:43 pm

      Thank you for the meaningful message, Melissa! And thank you for sharing with your dear friend! I am so sorry to learn about her husband’s health struggles right now! She sounds like a beautiful person of faith and expression. Prayers for both of them.

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