Sunday, April 20, 2014

Real Life | Easter Outfits

One would think that getting a photo of your children in their Easter attire would be an easy task, since you are a professional photographer.....ummm....NO!  This is real life people.  Payton (left) looking adorably innocent (don't let her fool you), Tyler trying to control the situation (and failing) and Dylan trying to run away (and winning)....oh and Maddie missing, because you can't expect a 14 year old to get ready quickly.  Yep.  Real life.  And I love it.

Happy Easter!

Friday, April 18, 2014

And the earth shook.... | A Good Friday Devotion

...and the earth shook...earthquakes, darkness, splitting rocks, bodies were raised from the dead...
sounds like a scene from a zombie apocalypse movie.  or some crazy sci-fi book.  but, it's from the living Word of God.  it was the day that Jesus Christ of Nazareth was nailed to a cross.  it was the day that the perfect, spotless Lamb of God was beaten, battered, and killed like a criminal.  it was the day that seemed so dark.  so hopeless.  so empty.  it's the feeling that our heart feels when we are at our most lonely.  the pain and anxiety deep inside that we have when we have no where to turn and life is too hard, too much, and too painful.  it's the crying, the sadness, the emptiness when we lose everything in this life that was important to us.  the earth shook with that intense and immeasurable anxiety.  and for many, maybe even you, that is the end.  end of the story.  Jesus died.  the end.
but I promise you my friends, it is NOT THE END of the story.  that was only a piece of a much bigger, life-altering story. 

the Creator of heaven and earth CHOSE to love us. (ephesians 1:4)
God loved us before we ever loved him.  (1 john 4:19)
we can't stand before God.  even the smallest sin separates us from him.  (romans 3:23)
we can't measure up.  we are completely messed up.  have you ever lied?  stolen?  been jealous?
yeah, we all have.  and that doesn't measure up to the most perfect, Almighty God. (psalm 18:30)
but God loved us. WHILE WE WERE STILL SINNERS.  while we were still gross, jealous, lying, thieving sinners. (roman 5:8)
he sent his PERFECT Son.  the spotless Lamb as a sacrifice, as an atonement, as the payment for us.
Jesus died, so that we didn't have to spend eternity without God. (john 3:16)
so that we could spend eternity in His presence, loving and being loved by Him. (1 john 5:13)
Jesus died so that we could LIVE.  FREELY LIVE. (john 8:36)
...but the story doesn't end when Jesus dies.  Jesus ROSE AGAIN.  HE LIVES.  his resurrection, our new life.  we can now LIVE fully, complete and accepted by God. (mark 16:9)
and i pray, that you, my friends, can know this LOVE that God has for you.  if you have never trusted in Jesus, as YOUR Savior, the one that died for YOU.  what is stopping you?  God is bigger than whatever is stopping you.  He is calling you, BY NAME, to come to Him.  will you come?

Jesus died.  Jesus rose again.  HE LIVES!!!!  Praise God, He is risen!!!!  and he is calling you....THAT is the end of the story.

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