Meet Julie Barnhill
I’m so glad you found your way here. If we were meeting at my house, I’d serve you a side of freshly baked chocolate chip cookies, pour you a cup of coffee, tea, or hot cocoa, and then sit and talk as we learn a bit more about one other.
Fact of the matter is, I’m a woman whose cheese has fallen off her cracker more than a few times. Several years ago, I had come undone. Someone I loved was spiraling out-of-control in a direction that I desperately wanted to stop, but couldn’t (can we ever?). Dreams–big fat Professional dreams–had shattered one after the other and an economic implosion obliterated both professional and personal resources.
It was a humdinger of a year to say the least. Yet, in the middle of it all, a bartered “Will Speak for Use of Beach Condo” engagement brought me to the Floridian shores of Sanibel and Captiva Island, and unbeknownst to me, would set in motion deeply restorative elements of experience leading ultimately to my creation of Solace Gathering.
Any one who knows me to one degree or another, knows of my love for teaching and encouraging women through humor, laughter, gut-level honesty, and the life-changing truth of the Bible. I also have a strong affinity (God designed, no doubt) for sunshine and the deep healing power found in and through time spent on saltwater shores. It is there I sense His presence, power, and the renewing work of the Holy Spirit. It is there I find Him at work and I want nothing more than to join bring others to such an incredible place.
You see, I believe what brings vitality, zest, and deep abiding peace to a woman’s body, heart, and soul, requires more than reading the latest “must read” book, or hearing an inspirational keynote message at a women’s conference, or digesting teaching contained in a thoughtful workshop, TED Talk, or doing devotions without fail while keeping up with the latest faith-inspired blogger or IG account.
Of this I am sure: God uses the slack-jaw beauty, sights, and sounds, of the Gulf tides, as well as sunrise and sunset, early morning cawing of birds, and a million and one seashells intricately designed, to speak to a woman’s soul.
I believe just as salt water is used for medicinal purposes such water is used by God to bring wholeness and wellness to infected places of our life which we ourselves are often unable to identify. Or too tired or dispirited to confront yet again.
This is what I offer to you sweet Solacer! A compilation of things which have seen me through hard places and brought body, mind, heart, and soul, immeasurable delight.
Salty gulf coast water.
Newly acquired friendships.
And lots and lots and lots of shelling. Shelling? Yes, sea shelling. Trust me on this; after our time together you’re going to be able to spot a Flat or Tulip rolling in the rack line with the best of them.