Friday, March 25, 2011

I'm Not Who I Was

Gossip. Really? Last time I checked I am not in middle school anymore...Not that I am calling anyone out. But I am sure at some point or another in our lives. We have all been guilty. To some level. Everyone we come in contact with has a "story" a "history" of some sort. Even I do. I am not the type of person who cares to share my story. I love to share it. Someone may need to hear that my life isn't perfect. I struggle. With lots of things. Depression. Stress. Anger. I personally feel that God allows us to go through the "rough times" to strengthen us. Realize our NEED for Him. Sometimes this opens our eyes, and other times, we just keep doing whatever it is we are doing...until we face yet another difficulty...It's similiar to how we discipline our children. When they continue to do the wrong thing over and over, we give them a "wake-up" using some sort of discipline. Whether it be spanking, time out, grounding...Whatever we choose...We still choose something. God is the same way. He wants us to realize that we NEED Him.  He wants us to realize that He is the ONLY way to get out of whatever mess we have gotten ourselves into. And sometimes that means...a rough road.  So, do I have a point? Yes. =) It is not our place to "talk about" anyone's "rough road"...Unless it is used to bring others closer to God. To Give Him the Glory. Never to bring someone down. I am not sure what has happened in our culture today that makes this "ok". It's not. Under any circumstance. And that's how I feel about that.

"Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen." Ephesians 4:29

See? It's in there. In Black and White. I don't have a difficult time understanding it...Seems to make sense to me....=)

This happened this morning. Someone said something about someone's past. Really? Do we have to go there? She may kill me for this, but she knows my heart. I am writing this because of my sister. She is one amazing person. My sister has had a rough time in the past. I won't go into details about it. Because of what I have been writing about ;) BUT...I will say this. I love her. and I truly look up to her. She has faced more in her life, than I could ever think about. She hit rock bottom, and when she did. She had no where to look but UP!!! And guess who was standing there with His arms open wide. Our Lord and Savior. He doesn't judge our past. He doesn't care how "dirty" we are. He doesn't care what people say about us, it doesn't affect Him in the least. Because He died for us. Ask her. I'm sure she would LOVE to tell you about it. When we reach up to Him, he picks us up, brings us close to Him. No Matter What. 

I love this song by Brandon Heath. The name is "I'm Not Who I Was"...None of us are. If we have a relationship with Jesus Christ you can't be. Who you were is gone. You are new in Christ. Now, we just have to put it into action. Daily.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

One Year Ago...

Ok, who would have thought I would post 2 blog entries in one day? =) I was looking at my old blog, and came upon this post...that I wrote, one year ago today...Crazy...But amazing to me..Had to share...

My Plan or His

"I know, I am a blog slacker....Who knows if anyone out there in blog world even reads this blog any longer? I am not sure, and as of right now, don't care =) Writing is therapeutic sometimes, and I just felt the need to get this down...for me, if nothing else.....

Sometimes I feel as if God's "Plan" for my life....has never been put into action....My plan is the one I chose to live.....instead of His......I know that sounds crazy to some...I have a beautiful family, a home, job, wonderful church family....shouldn't have anything to complain about...and really, as far as those things go, I don't...but something is missing...Now, if I knew WHAT that something is, I wouldn't be posting this....I have felt this way for some time now....and until lately, completely ignored the thoughts....You know how it is when you think that God is speaking to you, but what he is saying seems somewhat "crazy"? or a little "out there"? I mean why would God want me to do anything other than raise my family, go to work, go to church....and just "be"....I have this gut feeling, He wants more...

I read blogs...I may not post on mine as much as I read others, but there are some amazing blog writers out there....and yesterday, one inparticular touched on this subject. Facing fears, listening to God, not only listening-but doing....That could be scary. really. Stepping outside the "comfort zone" of our lives, trusting God, and giving ourselves to Him....I have dealt with this for years...thinking it was my job, that I needed to "step outside of", maybe a friendship that wasn't working-that I needed to "step away from"-so many times, I thought I was doing what He was asking-"stepping outside my comfort zone"....I stepped a different way, but never to the point of being uncomfortable....where I needed to TOTALLY depend on Him....I have never considered the thought of a bigger step....a MUCH bigger step....

While I was in NYC last summer...I was uncomfortable....That pretty much is the most uncomfortable I have ever been....James got us settled in, then he came home to work for a few weeks before coming there I was, with my 9 year old daughter, in an apartment as big as my laundry room, where I knew no one...and was supposed to "live"....Believe me, in the beginning, I thought to myself, " I am just going to stay in the apartment, until James come back"....but quickly realized that wasn't possible...We were there for Macey, because we truly felt God led us on this journey...So, how could I, in fear, not follow Him....Well, at that moment, when she and I were in tears, missing James, and the boys~it hit me...This is it...I am NOW outside my comfort zone....So now what? What he wanted for all these years....We gave it ALL to him....We got on our knees and began and Macey...we prayed for James' safety back home, we prayed for the boys, we prayed for our "journey" as we took on NYC alone....We began to pray, as if God was right there with us...We would recieve calls for auditions, in parts of town that I wasn't familiar with...We prayed that we would get on the right subway, take the right paths-to make the auditions on time....We prayed for everything...We prayed that God would show us to a church, where we could learn more about him, worship him, and grow closer to him during this time of change in our lives....I can honestly say....NYC was a blessing...Macey did amazing modeling, ect....but the true reason, I was outside my comfort zone, and had NO ONE but HIM to depend on...turn to...and He was there...We are planning on heading to the Big Apple again soon....entering another step in this crazy journey of ours....but I still don't think that is it...not the Big "Plan" he has in store for us...

God is moving. I am listening...and this time hoping to....go."

Love that...That was written before Haiti, before my Photography opportunity....That made me smile. Because of how far I have come...Good Stuff =) (for anyone who is interested-the link to my old blog is

Keep On

I have been down lately...Wanting to get things "Going" with my photography business, but just seems like one thing after another gets in the way...I knew that was going to happen...Hurdles are definitely in front of me...Especially because I am doing what God wants me to do. He wants me here. He wants me to depend on Him to guide me through this journey. I know that. I have never been more sure of anything....I just get angry because I can't seem to get past this....So frustrating...I want more than anything to get the studio finished...move all my "stuff" over there...Get my amazing desk (I got from a dumpster) Move my backgrounds and lights, have an "Open House" and start working from there 3 or 4 days a week...Shooting sessions, viewings, and even display some of the AMAZING things I can order...that I have never been able to do before...due to lack of space...But one thing after another keeps getting in my way...finances, washing machine torn up, schedules, sickness, James had a fender bender, which is more $ name it...ugh...even our commode has torn up....seriously???? I have had the sign for my studio in my den for almost 2 weeks...and we just can't seem to find the time to get over there and get it up...Along with the other things I need to do....I read this today...and it really spoke to I decided to share it here....

"High mountains can be just as difficult and challenging as low valleys.
Most people tend to associate difficult times in their lives with the idea of being in a valley. Maybe it’s a time of depression. Maybe you’ve lost your job or are struggling financially. Maybe your job performance is just suffering. Or maybe you have neglected your walk with God and now you feel distant.
And it’s true. These seasons are hard. Terribly hard. You don’t know if there will ever be a light at the end of the tunnel. And if it’s coming, it can’t come quickly enough.
But there’s a truth no one ever seems to mention: climbing the mountain is also challenging. The light at the end of the tunnel isn’t a mountaintop you suddenly arrive at with no work involved. It’s the base of the mountain that you now have to climb. And one that you’ll always be climbing.
The times of success in your life and the times when God is blessing you can be just as challenging as the times in the valley. Just in a different way, because now you’re going uphill.
And even when you make it to the so-called mountaintop, it isn’t easy there either. For example, this past Christmas, we saw over 1100 people receive Christ in three days. A definite mountaintop. And then we had to follow up with them and maintain our momentum to reach even more people. Still challenging.
Here’s the truth we want to avoid at all costs:
It’s all hard.
The valleys and the mountains. The low points and getting to the high points and staying at the high points. In the valley you’re trying to survive. And in the mountains you’re trying to thrive. Neither is a walk in the park.
That’s not very encouraging. So why share it?
Because it’s reality. Because it confronts an inane line of thinking that many of us cling to: that life is going to one day get to the point where it’s easy. If that’s what we’re waiting for, we’re going to be waiting a long time.
The goal of life isn’t to make it to a point where we can breathe easy. It’s to get to heaven breathless. Tired because we’ve been faithfully and passionately following God – through valleys and mountains.
So yes, it’s always hard. But our reward in the future makes it worth it. We’ll rest then. And we’ll push on now.
Besides, God is doing more in you and through you in your mountains and valleys than you can possibly imagine. That alone should give you joy. No matter where you’re at." Steven Furtick

I just love that...I know He is in all of this...I just want to keep on "keeping on" Because I know in my heart what I am meant to do <3

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Be the Change....

Change. To cause to be different. To give a completely different form or appearance to. To be different. To lay aside or abandon. To make RADICALLY different.

I looked up a few definitions of what Change means....and realized I know I want to change. God has given me so much, and I tend to just "go through the motions" of life. We get up, fix breakfast, go to work, take the kids to school, "do our day", then pick the kids up, fix dinner, run to whatever sporting event we have that day, homework, feed pets, baths, bed. Get up the next day, and do it all again. I don't want to sound negative (although on these rainy dreary days, I do tend to get a little down) but I want more than that. I want my kids to have more than that. That is a goal I have made for myself. I can honestly sit here and say that I have made some changes. I have stepped out on faith in a few areas of my life. I ventured to a foreign country, following God's call...and He has done nothing but "rock my world" since. =) I know that I have a l-o-n-g way to go, but the results that I have seen, just by making these changes are life altering. I can't make it through a day without spending time in His word.. That may sound crazy to you, if you haven't done it. I don't mean, just opening the Bible, reading something, and marking it off your to do list. I have been there, done that...It helped my OCD tendencies, but didn't help me at all with my Christian walk. Do it. Seriously pray before opening your Bible. Ask Him to teach you something today as you get into His word. He will. It happens to me DAILY. I promise. I can tell you about my experiences all day, but until you do it yourself. That's when you will be amazed. I want my kids to understand how important this is in their lives as well...I know that spending time with anyone increases the stability of that relationship. Your husband. your kids. your friends. Why not Jesus? It works. =)
I want to use the talent that He has given me to share His love with as many people as I come into contact with. He is telling me to do that with my Photography Business...I know that I may not be the best out there. I may not make the most money. I may not have the most elaborate equipment. I may not have all of the professional "titles" after my name. Sometimes those things bother me, but more than all of that-I do have Jesus. He is on my side. Guiding me along this journey. I often compare my journey to the Israelites  They complained, He stepped in. They complained. He came to their rescue. Over and over....I wonder if when they got to the Red Sea....if when the water parted. Did they complain about getting mud on their shoes? Wondering what they would have to face when they got to the other side? Worrying about how they would deal with what would happen next? Or did they just take the BIG step of faith, and go forward...probably running...Knowing HE was with them.. I think that's what they did.  That's what I want to do. I want to
Be The Change....I want to see in the World.
Share Him Daily. <3

Thursday, March 3, 2011


Available-Being willing to start where you are, use what you have, and do the best you can

I want to be Available.

I just read the following...
"Don't limit yourself in God's service simply because you come from a small town, the inner city, or a place tucked away in hopelessness.  It is just like God to take the smallest and least of His creation and turn it into something great and significant. It makes no difference where you are from.  All that really counts is, Where are you going? Why are you going? and Who is going with you? After all, God never makes a mistake.  If you're in sync with God, He will empower you and arm you with all that's necessary to give it a go." ~Franklin Graham, Living Beyond the Limits 

"Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God's grace in its various forms. If anyone speaks, he should do it as one speaking the very words of God. If anyone serves, he should do it with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. "(1 Peter 4:10-11)

That hits home with me right now. I know that God has been telling me to take a leap of faith, and to follow Him. Giving up a secure job, to do something that has no job security. Knowing what I should do, and having the mind set that I can do it has been difficult. Staying in His word is causing me to see things in a different light. I am in awe of how He speaks to us through His word. I have heard this all my life. Like I have said before, until you put it into action. You don't really understand it. Pastors, Sunday School teachers, your parents-they can all tell you "read your Bible, Pray daily"...but until you get "in Sync" with God, and make it a priority in your daily life, it is just a chore of sorts. Don't just let it be something that you check off of your "To-Do List"...It has to be a time set aside for Him. For years, I said, "I don't have time", or I just read something to read it...and didn't actually get much at all out of it....and now(no I am not perfect by any means) but I look forward to getting in His word. I feel like He speaks to me that way.

I know that He is speaking to me about certain things...and I just want to be Available. I know He is working. I can't wait to see the outcome. I know that it is going to be bigger than my little ole' mind could ever imagine. More than anything, I want others to see HIM through me. I didn't go to school for photography, I have never claimed to be the "best"...I am my own worst critic...believe me...One of the reasons, I find this journey so difficult..because "There are so many amazing photographers" Why Me? I don't know the answer, but if I can help people see life through His Eyes...I will have found my purpose.

Let's Go...never look back, always look ahead. Ready to go down the path that God has prepared for me.