Why wait?

Why do I wait?
Till storms threaten and tempests rage,
till dilemmas pull me in all directions?
Till it feels like everything good is taken from me
and I’m stripped of what I knew and loved?
Why wait till my comforts are gone
and I’ve hit rock bottom,
and I’m broken and barely holding on?


Why do I wait?
Till the end of the day
when tired eyes droop from a long day,
or till everything goes wrong in a day’s time
and then I finally remember to call on God for help?
Why wait till I fully understand Him
till I can grasp with my finite mind,
this infinite God?

Oh my soul, why do I wait?

Why do I wait to rely on Him
to fling myself into His strong arms,
to entrust to Him this life that I can’t handle on my own?
What holds me back from giving in to blind faith
to trust this God that I can’t see,
but Who sees and knows everything about me?
What hinders my ability to hear and to know,
that He is with me?

Oh my soul,
wait on God.


But do not wait to go to God.
Go to Him daily. Hourly. Moment by moment.
Till I am full and overflowing with Him.
Till my life is so wrapped up in Who He is
that onlookers will only see Him when they look at me.
Wait on God, because in this waiting
you will learn His character. He is good.
Creation will blend with the Creator. He will call it “good.”

Here, you will find Him.


This waiting is not restless, useless waiting.
It is useful. It is restful.
Because in choosing to trust, in giving in to faith,
in letting go and surrendering, you will discover His life.
Abundant. Free.
You will find absolute peace in something
so much bigger, so much better,
so much wiser than me.

This waiting does not wait to turn to God.
This waiting runs to God
because this waiting knows that without faith
it is impossible to please Him.
This waiting relishes the moment
and does not fret about the future- shaky though it be.
This waiting does not control- it frees.
This waiting has hope.


“When I wait, You strengthen my heart.” Psalms 27:14


Two weeks ago, I joined a team of thirty people to help with a VBS in Jamaica. The trip was a week long… It wasn’t nearly long enough to take in everything about the culture, the people, the food and the countryside that I would’ve liked to, but it was just enough time for me to get a brief introduction into the Jamaican culture. Just long enough to miss it dreadfully when I landed back on American soil…

I was so excited about going. Initially, I didn’t think I could go because of work and a few other schedule conflicts, but those conflicts vanished one by one and I bought my ticket less than a month before we were scheduled to fly out. I was excited and confident about going up until my bags were packed and I was tossing and turning the night before I left. “I have no idea what I’m getting into, God…” Once again, I felt dread creep over me. This wasn’t the first time I’d signed up to do something so much bigger than what I could do on my own. I breathed a prayer to God about it and He calmed my fears. “Do not be afraid, I will be with you.” And He was. Every moment of the trip. When things were going fine, He was with me. And when things spun out of my control at the end and I ended up losing my passport. Even in the middle of that chaos, He was present with me. 


Join me as I give you a little tour of the island… 




|| Caribbean blue ||

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So long, Jamaica.  

George & Jenny {wedding}

1J4P0734I’ve known Jenny for more than half of my life. We went to the same church for several years and then after my brother died six years ago, we started corresponding… She had lost a brother too. Our Dads had also died within three weeks of each other, back when we were both just three years old. Needless to say, we have a lot in common.


1J4P1204Three years ago, at a mutual friend’s wedding, she caught the eye of a fine young man from New York. 

George says, ”I immediately knew she was completely different from any other girl I had ever met… Not only was she the most uniquely beautiful redhead I had ever seen, but I could sense that there was so much depth to the person she was… Not to mention that we had that strong attraction and chemistry that I had only heard about in stories and often times I had made fun of, not believing it actually existed. But I knew right away I had it with this spunky redhead. :) I was completely smitten.”

Jenny says, “I was completely intrigued. Those serious big green eyes had me wondering, and wanting to find out what went on in that mind of his… They spoke volumes to me. He was so good at everything he did… Intimidating and yet so impressive. Not to mention we seemed to connect on every level when we talked. Conversation was easy and depth came naturally. I could tell he lived life with passion and pursued everything he did with his whole heart and mind. He had this way of making me completely lose myself when he came around. I started hopelessly falling…”


They waited patiently for three years before the time came last summer when they could finally start dating.


It hardly seemed believable when their wedding day arrived in the beginning of May. For so long, dating seemed impossible; much less getting married! Now here they were rehearsing lines to their vows and getting ready to promise their love to each other forever.

Dreams do come true.




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I was a part time bridesmaid and full time photographer. Honestly, it couldn’t have gone smoother than what it did. Jenny is a photographer, so I felt hugely honored to photograph her day.



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“Mr. George Rutler
…all those times thinking this day would never come.
You’ve defined true love to me. Never giving up, even at the impossible.
Protecting me,
being my best friend and a strong leader at the same time…
Loving me in a way I have never felt loved.
I am SO excited to spend the REST of my life with you.

Love, I promise to honor and respect you and to always value your opinion above my own.
To give you the best of myself and not take you for granted
To stand by you in the good times and the bad,
when we’re laughing or crying, whether with friends and family,
or when it’s just you and me.
I promise to keep myself open to you, to share my happiness with you,
and to trust you with my pain.
I promise to never leave you.
You’re home will be my home.
Your children will be my children.
Your God will be my God.
I vow to be your wife.
Your partner and best friend.
Your comfort
and your lover.
To live within the warmth of your heart and always call it home.

I love you darling.”

046O4896“My love, Jennifer Yoder…

I choose you for life. I want you to know that I love, cherish, and adore you more than words can express. I promise you my deepest love, my fullest devotion, and my tenderest care. Through the pressures of the present and the uncertainty of the future. I promise to be faithful to you. I promise to love you, to commit to you, and to support you. I promise to respect your unique talents and abilities. And to help you pursue your hopes and dreams. Babe, you have shown me what love feels like and You are everything I need. And everything I have ever dreamed of and more. At this moment I know all my prayers have been answered and all my dreams have come true. I praise God for you. For all of your love and friendship that I am so unworthy of. I promise to be here for you forever and always. I promise to always be there by your side when times are bad and to love you unconditionally no matter what. From this day forward babe, I will always be with you. To care for you, and to love you unconditionally. My arms will always be a shelter and home for you. Jen, I’ve been falling in love with you for three years now, and I can’t believe this is happening but I can finally call you mine…

Jennifer Yoder, You are my girl… And I’m smitten to the very core. I love you sweetheart.”046O4936 046O4957 046O4968 046O4978046O5002 046O5003 046O5004046O5019



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Josh & Jill {wedding}


Their love story, as told by Jill: “My dad was asked to speak at a youth retreat in New York. I didn’t want to go and wasn’t sure that I’d be able to since I was in school and it was one of my top priorities. I would be starting my last semester a few days after I got home and I wanted to focus on it. I decided to go and was excited about seeing some of my friends again. On Sunday morning, we walked into church. I saw one of the guys I’d been with on a missions trip to Africa with, standing in the back of church, but didn’t think much of it. What I didn’t see was that his cousin Josh was with him. When I walked in, Lee elbowed Josh and looked at me and said that he should check me out. Josh told him “no thanks” and didn’t think much of it. I never saw him that day. I met Josh officially the next day when I sat down in my small group study time. A guy suggested that we all introduce ourselves and said that he was Josh Kauffman. I didn’t think about him that much but I did notice (and loved) that he wasn’t afraid to speak out in the study time. I chatted with him the next day after our study group time, but didn’t think much of it until later that night one of my friends asked me if I thought that Josh liked me. I was like, “who’s Josh?” but then remembered that I had talked with him for a while that day. I told her that I didn’t think so, but that we had some things in common and that I thought he was just being friendly. He was impressed with me and my eagerness to participate in the study group, but he wasn’t looking for a girlfriend, so he almost dismissed it as a distraction. On Tuesday, my name just kept coming to his mind and he kept dismissing it. Finally after that didn’t work, he told God that if he was trying to tell him something, he’d listen and try to get to know me better. So from Wednesday and on after that, I began to notice that he was being more intentional about talking with me and getting to know me and telling me about his life, but in a very honest and upright way. I also noticed that he talked to Daddy a lot and thought that was kind of cool. He also told his parents that he had met a really nice girl, but that he was being prayerful about getting to know me. By Thursday or Friday, my friend Becca told me that she was sure he was interested because he was never like that around girls he didn’t know… and I was pretty sure myself that he was at least interested. I talked to Daddy about him on Friday and asked him what he thought about Josh and he had a lot of good to say about him, but said that we had just met, so I should relate to him as a sister and to be genuine. Then he added this… I had never heard this from my daddy before. He said, “Jill, I like him and he might be the guy for you. If he is, you need to give him a little feedback and let him know that you are. Encourage him, but do it without being flirty. If momma had never clued me in on the fact that she was interested, you might not even be here, so be open, but cautious.” I was kinda shocked, but decided that he might have a point! We started trading a few texts over the next week. He said that me texting him was just what he needed. He said that he wouldn’t have asked unless he knew that there was a “connection” of some sorts on my end, and that clued him in to my interest. But at this point, we were both being very prayerful and cautious. He went off to Mexico and I didn’t hear from him much after that.046O3378

In May, Josh called and asked about starting a relationship with me. I was excited. Daddy was in touch with Mike (Josh’s dad) for a few months and they were able to talk about a lot of stuff. Daddy made arrangements to have a phone call with Josh at the end of May and the conversation went well and they made plans to talk again. Momma went with Daddy during this phone call. She didn’t know Josh, but I had talked to her about him so I think that she knew that I did like him and that he was a great guy. After talking with him, Momma asked him if he wanted to call me the next day. He said, “Absolutely!” They came home and told me that I could be expecting a phone call the next day, but that I should text him right then. So I did! It was exciting and great to know that we were starting out on this journey. I didn’t know what to do with myself… I just wandered around the yard with my phone in my hand going from place to place. a couple of my brothers laughed at me and my sisters said I was cute! I told my younger siblings that evening and they were so surprised and happy. We talked the next day and it was amazing! Being able to hear each other’s excited voices and talking was amazing. We realized how much God had brought us through and where He was taking us and we were excited to be on this new journey together as a couple. The whole relationship was kind of surreal until he came two weeks later. We were so excited to see each other again, but a little nervous at the same time. But our fears were quickly put to rest as we sat and talked, prayed together and shared hearts. We were in this together, with God and are ready to face the world! Our first date was at a lovely restaurant in Marshall. We had dinner and talked for a long time and then we headed to the center of town to meet up with my family for dessert. We had fun together and the entire weekend was amazing. We had a lot more amazing weekends after that. A few weeks after we started dating, I went to New York to meet his family and I fell in love with them. They were absolutely wonderful and I felt like I fit right in with them. It was great.

046O9893Fast forward to November… Josh and I were in love and convinced that God was leading us to pursue marriage. We knew that God had led us together and we didn’t want to live the rest of our lives without each other. He had another phone conversation with my parents asking them for permission to marry me, which they gave. Josh came to see me and told me that we were going to go out together, but said that it was a surprise. I didn’t think too much about it, but had a sneaking suspicion that he might propose. He took me to the restaurant where we had our first date. After dinner, we walked to the fountain at the center of town. It was all lit up with beautiful changing colors and as I was admiring them, Josh turned and took my hands, got down on one knee and asked me to be his wife and to spend the rest of my life with him. It was so incredible. I said “Yes!” as he slipped a beautiful ring on my finger. I was going to be his wife and was ready for the next step. We were getting married!

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Darwin & Ruthie {wedding}


“We met for the first time on May 27, 2013. My sister and I traveled to Colorado because my uncle and his family live in Colorado. My Aunt was due to have a baby. We made plans to spend a week there to help out over the time that their baby was born.

One night we went to a softball game hosted by my uncle’s church. We didn’t know many people there besides my cousins. But I did happen to notice this guy playing softball… I thought he looked like a nice guy.

After the softball game was over, a whole bunch of us went and played volleyball. The guy that I had noticed earlier, came over and introduced himself. “I’m Darwin.” I thought he was a nice gentleman and that it was nice of him to welcome us. But I didn’t think anything more about it at the time.

After that night, we started talking and getting to know each other more. It seemed like from there on out, God kept drawing our hearts together in a way that left us speechless.

We both had standards and things we were looking for in a life partner and it seemed we were just meant to be. I came home several days after we met and we started praying and seeking God’s will and then He called dad about two weeks later and asked to start a relationship with me. My dad wanted to get to know him a little first, to see who this guy was. They set up a time for Darwin to come to Georgia so that he and my dad could get acquainted.

Dad gave his blessing for us to go ahead with our relationship! I knew that it was just another confirmation from God that we were meant to be together. We went on our first date on July 13th, 2013. From there it was a fast, challenging, exciting journey!

On September 20th, 2013 Darwin asked me to marry him. I said yes!

Time and again as our relationship continued to blossom and deepen, I have stepped back in awe as I watched God take control and orchestrate our story. We never could have planned a love story like this one on our own, but we are so thankful that God has led us together and brought us to where we are today.”

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Michael & Celine {engagement}

Meet Michael and Celine. A sweet couple who I met last year at a wedding and then got in touch with just recently about their upcoming wedding…

046O7582046O7556I was so thrilled to get to do their engagement images! We started the photoshoot at a green house and a beautiful botanical garden. Later on, we headed over to the bowling alley where I got some shots of them bowling together…

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