Glimpse of Glory

We were finishing up dinner at Moe’s Southwest Grille.

A Michael Jackson song started playing.

She stood up and said ‘Dance with me Daddy!!’.

And he did. Without hesitation. Without a care in the world. In the middle of the restaurant. He danced.

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Thank you Lord for this sweet glimpse of your glory. It’s moments like these that remind me what life truly is about. That in spite of me and my selfishness, I have been given a life full of Your grace and glory. Way more than I deserve.

In the crazy game we call life, we so easily lose ourselves to it. And we don’t even realize it until it’s too late. Stop glorifying busy. Instead glorify blessed. Put the phone down. Turn off the tv. Unplug the computer. Wash the dishes tomorrow. Fold the laundry later.

And just dance. Let it all go.

Because in the end, it doesn’t matter who Juan Pablo gave the final rose to, or who changed their Facebook status from single to in a relationship. Or how many loads of laundry you could finish in one day.

It’s about the dance. About embracing every single moment. Because these moments are gifts from God. Yes…even the bad ones. They all have a purpose. Don’t be too ‘busy’ to miss the purpose. Because then the moment is wasted. And if you ask me, I would not want to miss anything that God had intended for me.

See God’s glory…and embrace the moments.

in His Love…

Jill

Boxes are not for God. {So don’t put Him in one!}

Have you ever said never? And then one week, month, or even years down the road you find the never is actually happening? Like I will never be a server. And then I found myself serving for five years. I will never wear skinny jeans. Skinny jeans are now my second fave pants to wear {right after my leggings of course!} Here’s the whammy…I will never be a photographer. I’m learning that God has quite the sense of humor. And better plans.

You see, three years ago I decided I wanted a ‘good’ camera. I had a 3 year old and an infant and I was tired of taking horrible pictures of them. So, I invested in an entry level dslr camera {in case you just have to know…it’s a Canon. and I LOVE it!} And I quote myself saying to my husband, “Don’t let me think I’m a photographer just because I have this camera!” I told myself over and over I will NOT become a photographer! I can only imagine the laughter coming from up above as those words left my mouth.

It all started when I had a sweet friend mention she was getting her daughter’s pictures taken at a studio in the mall. I knew she was struggling financially, and, well, I couldn’t let her spend what little money she had on studio pictures {insert apology here if you are a studio photographer! Nothing against you and your amazing abilities! I just prefer the outdoors and natural light when it comes to photography!} So I said if she wanted me to I would take her daughter’s pictures. For free. She took me up on the offer and we had so much fun! {Disclaimer before looking at the picture below…this was three years ago! I have learned a LOT since then!!}

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I still can’t call myself a photographer. It just sounds weird to me. Yes I do lots of photo shoots. Yes people pay me to do them. But a photographer? No way. I’m not THAT good to have earned that title. And I by no means know everything there is to know about it! Yes I’ve learned a lot, but I have a LOT to learn!!!

One thing I am learning is this…don’t put God in a box. Because you know what he does? He blows your box up into millions of teeny tiny little pieces. And then smiles. God gave me this talent that I still don’t even realize I have. For example…I did a family photo shoot last Sunday. The kids are 2 and 6 and they made me work HARD. If one was smiling the other was pouting. If one was looking at the camera the other was picking his nose {seriously!!}. I was struggling you guys. BIG time. By the end of the session I was sure I was going to have to reschedule and try again because I wasn’t able to get any good shots! But when I sat down at my computer and uploaded all my images, I was shocked. It’s like God just uses me to push the button on the camera. I was so excited when I saw this image on my screen…

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I would like to ask you to please pray for me! As God as taken this little tool to the next level and put a wedding {GASP!!!} on my plate!! Yes, I am photographing an actual wedding in April! I’m very excited, but come April I will be incredibly nervous I’m sure! I’m thankful that the bride and groom are the sweetest couple EVER. I did their engagement photos and had a ton of fun getting to know them…

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I’m still in complete awe of what God uses me for. I have no idea what His plans are for me and this little {dare I say it?? Photography??} business. But I can sit here and tell you this…don’t underestimate your abilities! God does not call the qualified, He qualifies the called. By no means am I at all qualified to be a photographer. But He has called me to reach out to people through my camera lens. To spread His love. And all I can say is thank you, Lord. Thank you for giving me the tools to teach the world about You, one camera click at a time.

 

ALWAYS because of Him,

Jill 

 

 

Unplugging to Reconnect. {A Social Media Addiction}

Last weekend my little family had an ‘unplug’ weekend. We found a remote cabin in the woods with no tv, no internet, and no cell phone signal. It was just the four of us and God’s beautiful creation. Just to give you an idea of how remote I’m talking about…here is the road trail to get to the cabin…..

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Yes. We were serious when we said remote. No distractions. 100% US. 

This is where I have an issue. How have we let it come to this?? We praise today’s technology and oh how so lost we’d be without it. But would we be? Would we truly be lost? Or would we be forced to think? And even worse, forced to TALK to people?! {GASP!!!!} I’d be lost without Jesus. I’d be lost without my husband and my kids. And yet those are the people that get shoved aside for my social media addictions. 

There. I said it. I’m addicted to social media. I don’t want to miss the latest happenings in the world, but at the expense of missing what’s happening right under my nose?? Of missing my daughter so lovingly mother her little baby dolls? Or of missing my son build the coolest train track EVER?? No freaking way. But yet somehow I have let that happen. So not cool. 

Last weekend was a taste of life without the addiction. And it was oh so sweet. So now the question…where do we go from here? How do we break ourselves of the addiction? How do have a healthy balance? 

The answer: I have no idea. But I do know I don’t want to have to have an unplug weekend just to reconnect with my family. Maybe leave home without the phone? Or giving it ‘hours of operation’? Even as I type this I hear how ridiculous this sounds. IT’S A PHONE!!!!!! How did we get so stinking attached to a dumb phone?!?!?!

So here’s to living life free of social media distractions. And being present in the here and now of my own little world. And with that I will leave you with some pics of what happens when we unplug….

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Always Because of Him,

Jill

A Little Sewing Machine and A Whole Lotta Jesus…

I confess…I have zero goals for this little business of mine. It started as a little hobby…an outlet I suppose. Something that this stay-at-home momma could call mine. It’s my ‘me-time’. And now, almost three years, a facebook page, an etsy shop and a blog later…I find myself wondering…what DO I want to do with this???

Welp, the answer to that question still remains a mystery. But amidst all of the pondering I realized something…I’m not giving back to the One that gave it to me. My talent is God-given, yet I was using it all for my own selfish gratitude.  God has given me something that I can use to reach out to people that I would never otherwise cross paths with. Something to SHOUT His name with! Something to say…HEY!!! I’m a follower of Jesus and He has changed my LIFE!! And He can do the same for YOU!! Because YOU are SO LOVED!!!!

Yes. THAT is what this is all about. This thing called a business. It’s not about what I create. It’s about bringing people to Jesus. Because I was lost, but now I’m found. And found people find people. And God chose me to find people through my little sewing machine and camera. One scarf, one bag, one photo shoot at a time.

To begin this process, it only seemed right to change the name of my business. Because in order for it to be about Jesus, it needs to glorify Him right from the start. So let me introduce to you…

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ALWAYS because of Him,

Jill