Everyday, seriously every single day, I become more and more grateful for the job that I get to do. I never, ever in a million years would have thought that this is where I would be. I did youth ministry for what seemed like forever - ok just like 8 or 9 years - and for the longest time I just knew I was going to work in church ministry or something close to it. Shoot (no pun intended) I even went to The Bible Seminary and earned an M.Div..
For all this I too am truly grateful...
Last spring however, I kept asking God, "What is my next adventure?" And He BOLDY kept me walking through and opening this photography door. Now, I have had guilt over this whole becoming a tog thing, because I have spent so much time and effort (and money - not even my own) pursing what I thought was a life of church/program ministry, and now, to be doing mostly photography, just seems kind of surreal.
But.. and it is a BIG BUT... hehe. I sure do make myself laugh. (I am really lame folks, really lame).
But I think ministry can be part of what I do each time I meet a family, hold a baby, pinch the cheeks of a toddler, and visit the hospital to photograph children in the NICU.
When I spend time with my Sara Stanley Photography families, and I mean spend time with them (newborn shoots have lasted as long as 6 hours before) I get to know them. I meet them in this personal, intimate space, of new and existing life... and it is absolutely glorious. We talk about hopes, and dreams, and life before babies. We talk about Jesus and love, and everything in between. It is simply precious, and I am SO grateful for it. Yes, sometimes there is lots of poo, crying and tears but then there is also taking breaks, cuddling on the couch with a sweet sibling to watch Frozen while mama feeds.
Ministry is spending life with people. It is. It doesn't always have to be about the program of excellence or sitting in a pew on Sunday - it can be just this, loving people, getting to know them, and sharing life together. That is what Jesus did.
Anyway, I ramble - but my point is and I got to thinking about all of as I uploaded these photos of sweet 4 pound Sarah and her wonderful family. I got to spend four-ish hours in the McSpadden home last Friday and it was perfect. We chatted, I got to know them, and them me and we shared life together for a little while. I want to be in their lives, not just because they call me to photograph their family, but because they are awesome and I got to not just photograph them, but GET TO KNOW THEM.
I don't know what your job is, but mine is amazing.
Thank you families for allowing me to be part of your life!
Without any further rambling - here are a few of my faves from our session!