“You’re going to need a notebook or somewhere to keep a list of ideas. These ideas will come to you at times when you least expect them. You need to write them down. I can’t stress this enough. If you don’t write them down, you could forget.”
Those were words spoken over me about my business. Sure enough, one night as I was trying to sleep, I was hit with a big list. It was November 2, 2018, my heart was flooded with a list of people that I would be working with and the reasons why. Yet somehow, those reasons have changed in ways I could not have expected.
Jay and Tara Murphy were a couple on that list. I photographed their wedding in Fall of 2012. We became quick friends. When you walk in the room, Tara is someone who makes you feel like it’s your birthday, every day. Have you ever seen the opening to Love Actually? It’s set in an airport and you see people reuniting and hugging with joy I can’t put into words. It’s probably my all-time favorite scene in a movie. If you take all those hugs, roll them into one giant, joyous, over the top, to the moon hugs; that’s how Tara greets you when you walk in the room. It’s better than any red carpet, I’m sure.
I put Jay and Tara on this list as people were revealed to me that night. I tucked it away and let it go. I knew things would come together in time. As it turns out, winter of 2018 hit each of our families hard. There was a lot going on in our lives and for the first time in six years, we didn’t touch base for about a year.
This summer, as I have been working on goals, I looked back at the list and thought, “God, did I get it wrong when you revealed them to me?” I thought maybe I had some kind of wishful thinking and had missed the mark. I knew two things that allowed doubt to creep in. Tara is financially wise. She could have thousands in the bank and still hold out on a purchase because it’s not on clearance. I thought to myself, she wouldn’t invest in portraits unless it was a wedding. I also knew, I hadn’t visited with her in over a year and we had hardly spoken in that time. If she reached out, it would be to visit and to catch up, certainly not for portraits.
One of the things I love most about God, is in all His majesty, He has a sense of humor. He makes me laugh and I love that. He knew Tara wouldn’t invest in portraits either, so the chances of her calling me up were slim to none. Where we see impossible, God makes all things possible.
In steps Krysti, Tara’s best friend. Remember, I haven’t seen Tara in over a year. Out of nowhere, I get a message from Krysti telling me she wanted to do something special for Tara. She wanted to give Jay and Tara a gift of portraits and within minutes, she sent full payment for a session and all the images. I was shocked, then I started laughing. I couldn’t help myself. I was driving down the road and just laughing. Look at you God! You are so great! Something that seemed unlikely to happen, was so incredibly simple to Him.
I say this as a reminder to myself and as wisdom for you, that anything can happen. We see things as possible in one way. It doesn’t mean things can’t come to us in a completely unimaginable way. If God tells you He’s going to make it happen, He’s going to make it happen.
God has shown me one thousand times over that He is faithful. That doubt didn’t even feel like something negative. It was that small seed planted by the enemy. “Maybe it’s your imagination. Maybe it wasn’t God speaking to your heart,” but I knew better. I knew that as the list came to me that night, it was Him.
I also have another list. A list so insane of things that God has shown me about my family, that it looks foreign to me. I believe what was shown to me and know God is faithful. This list is so crazy that I was afraid to show it to my husband but I knew I had to. I had to because God will use it the way he used my photography list. One day my husband will laugh with joy because he will be so overcome with God’s faithfulness, over and over and over again. I can’t wait for those days. I can’t wait to see that smile on my husband’s face, the one of joy and revelation, the one of “Well look at you God! You found a way where I saw no way.”
It’s not surprising that my session with Jay and Tara was everything amazing! We met at Quiet Waters Park in Annapolis Maryland. We had the most incredible sunset. As Tara held hands with her little girl, a sailboat was cruising by and a bird flew just to the left of the sun. It was picture perfect in every way.
Jay and Tara choose to keep their daughter’s photo from being posted on the internet, so images you see here are selected and created to meet those requests. Their daughter’s beautiful blue eyes are something special. They are as pretty as this sunset.
Krysti, a very special thank you to you. As I went through this experience, I wonder if you even know that God used you. He used you to make a miracle happen, to support my work and to bring me to spend time with people I love very much. I hope that makes you feel amazing because you are. I'm so thankful for you and for the gift you gave each of us.
Maryland Family Photographer Annapolis Photographer