Gail Lynn Photography: Blog https://www.gailynn.com/blog en-us (C) Gail Lynn Photography (Gail Lynn Photography) Mon, 16 Jan 2023 23:21:00 GMT Mon, 16 Jan 2023 23:21:00 GMT https://www.gailynn.com/img/s/v-12/u467593060-o1072369875-50.jpg Gail Lynn Photography: Blog https://www.gailynn.com/blog 120 96 A Perfect Fit https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2022/2/a-perfect-fit There is a glut of photographers all over the world these days. With the progress of technology and affordable digital cameras, people are advertising a variety of styles and abilities. Not everyone with a camera is a professional photographer. Here are a few helps for you to consider when you get to a place that has you looking for a photographer that meets your specific needs. What is the number one thing you look for when you're searching for the perfect photographer? Is it price, style, location, personality, or the ease of a clear process? If you've been looking for a maternity or newborn photographer you've probably realized that it can be a little overwhelming at times and I'm here to help you in your search with my 5 best tips on finding the best photographer for you! 

1. Take time to study the portfolio, or type of photos they have taken. If they are a little dark but you like very light, bright photos, you will not be happy after everything is done.

 

2. Make sure you understand the price and everything that is included. A $10 price tag may draw you in, but the packages for printed products or digital images may start out at $350 or more.

3. Find a photographer whose work you like and that fits within your budget by asking yourself a few questions. Why are you looking to hire a photographer? Is there an occasion coming up that you want to relive forever? Did you see an ad that got your interest? Do you value forever memories as much as you value other luxuries? I feel that capturing and archiving memories is necessary and have invested much money and time in capturing and preserving my memories. My perfect client is aligned with that thought process.

4. How do they deliver your images? It is very popular to ‘shoot and burn’ which is to take your pictures and deliver them digitally as a download or on a DVD or USB. Other photographers take time and expertise, style the shoot for the best memory possible, know posing and light and transform each image into beautiful works of art. If you are paying $100 for three hours of coverage and many images, there is a good chance that this particular photographer may not be running an official business. They may be making a little pocket money. Photographers starting out make under $3/hour by the time they cover expenses and their time. The time a photographer spends with you is a fraction of the time they spend getting ready for the shoot, editing and delivering a finished product to you.

5. Photographers are as different as other companies. Target, Walmart and Macy’s offer similar products but at different quality and price points. Red Lobster, McDonalds and other food sources also vary in quality and prices. It’s up to your preferences, budget and priorities what you will be satisfied with after everything is done. These are your forever memories, hopefully to create a timeline on your walls.

 

I hope these little tips help you with your search. If you'd like to talk more about hiring me as your personal family photographer, then shoot me a message! I have a few exciting ideas for the coming year and a flexible calendar because all of our time is valuable, and I work within your availability.


 

 

]]>
(Gail Lynn Photography) artistic photographer photography schedule shoot and burn time valuable https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2022/2/a-perfect-fit Thu, 03 Feb 2022 06:20:41 GMT
Hello There https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2022/1/hello-there I haven't introduced myself on here for a while, so I thought I'd do that again. A big warm hello to all of you. My name is Gail Ostermeyer and I'm the artist behind Gail Lynn Photography.

Me & cameraMe & camera
When my children were younger (many years ago) I understood how important stopping time and saving memories was. I would shoot for me, but later formed a business and used my passion to photograph important moments through Family, Wedding and High School Senior Photography. Recently I fell in love with newborn photography, after I realized I am not built for wedding photography anymore. It is hard on a body, and mine is getting a little older every day. It is exciting to focus on babies and families and establishing another circle of loyal clients and friends.

In Home gearIn Home gear I spend most of my days balancing scheduling, shooting, and editing with three needy dogs, a disabled veteran hubby, our beautiful great-granddaughter and find it challenging, but fulfilling. For me, what I do is so much more than just a job, it's a way to meet and serve new moms and dads, and their families. My goal is to turn new clients into friends and faithful followers while capturing their forever memories. I get to hold, comfort and photograph sweet little babies, and toddlers and give a little encouragement to mom and dad if needed. 


Before I focused on photography, I was a high-risk OB nurse. There is nothing better than that new baby smell. Little humans are so different with their individual personalities, smiles, yawns and hiccups. This is a very special time to capture the moments and enjoy them. My education is ongoing as I strive to be a little better every time I set-up and shoot.

Super Quin 1Super Quin 1 We live in the west valley, almost to the California border, but I welcome the invitation to photograph your family wherever you may be here in Arizona. I'd love to get to know you a little better if you want to share a little about yourself in comments.

 

 

]]>
(Gail Lynn Photography) about me family Hello newborn photographer newborn photography https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2022/1/hello-there Thu, 27 Jan 2022 01:19:18 GMT
Why not Easy? https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2021/3/why-not-easy How is it March already?

As I crawled out of bed this morning to let Gunner out, I was thinking how nice life would be if it was easier. How nice to have people that we loved, love us back, and they wouldn't leave or reject us. For every ad I submit, hordes of people would fight over me because I am awesome. For each prayer we lifted up, they would come back to us multiplied, powerful and fulfilled. Imagine being able to feed the hungry children, house every stray, neglected animal, shelter for those fighting for our freedoms, and complete freedom for anyone taken into slavery! What a glorious world this would be.

Unfortunately, nature teaches us that there is a cycle, initiated from the beginning of time, that creates a strength, endurance, and goodness within us for the better good. Negative circumstances are necessary for this growth. Sigh.

Once there was a willow planted and well taken care of. It had its own water supply, food, the perfect amount of sunlight, and it grew tall and beautiful. One day, a heavy wind came through and blew against it and this beautiful tree was completely pulled out of the ground, roots and all. Not having to stretch the roots toward a water source, the root system became shallow and easily moved out of place. 

Trials and difficult times, although hard, wear us down and tempt us to give up. We need something to encourage and strengthen us. When we are younger, hopefully a loving parent, grandparent, or mentor is able to give us encouragement and hope to keep trying. As we get older, a spouse, best friend, pastor, sibling, or someone placed in our life will help us up and keep us going in the right direction. I have been so blessed to have good people placed in my life to hold my chin up, and tell me gently when my thinking is skewed, giving me an alternative way to see things or do something that I need to do. 

Most of all, I am so gloriously thankful that the Lord spoke my name, and I was able to hear Him through the noise. I have NO idea why He chose me. I am stubborn, a little negative, and (honestly) want to give up about every other day. But the right verses come when I need them. The right word is spoken when I need it. My spirit rises up in me and empowers me to become the warrior I need to be to face the demons, people and circumstances I need to. One of my favorite memory verses is Colossians 1:19 "For by Him were all things created, that are in heaven and that are in the earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones or dominions, or principalities or powers: all things were created by Him, FOR him." Like a tree, we need to dig deep to find our nutrition, our life source, so that we will grow, meet challenges with confidence and become great warriors that withstand pressure, opposition, and controversy. At the end of the battle is greatness, God's glory lifted up, and the best rest ever. 

I leave you with this word given to me this morning:

2 Timothy 2:3 "So, you, therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ." The battle is worth it. The prize is worth it. Jesus thought we were worth it. Now, that is something to think about. 

Yours until He comes,

Gail O.

]]>
(Gail Lynn Photography) church faith fight food help hope jesus source strength understanding warrior https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2021/3/why-not-easy Mon, 01 Mar 2021 22:46:24 GMT
A New Day https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2020/12/a-new-day 19 days until Christmas. Even if you love the classic Christmas carols, we will be so ready to be done with them by the end of the month.

It has been cold here in the Phoenix area and those with asthma and arthritis have been struggling to stay healthy.

As I see the beautiful Christmas sessions being posted, I feel a little guilty for not offering them. However, I have thought that putting my energy to being prepared, efficient and ready for the New Year is more important at this time. Also, I have been concentrating on capturing the highlights of the life of one Lorelei Blanchard, who will be three months old soon. 

Today, I think I will wane from the wedding market. It seems the new clients want high end photography with an uncle Bob budget, and do not seem to understand lighting, or appreciate the work and time involved in capturing and creating the art they see on Pinterest. You absolutely have a right to your opinion. I have a right to do what  I love and be able to pay my bills. I am seeking God's will, and I love weddings, but the right clients keep eluding me. 

The new year will bring headshots, and a concentration on newborns and families. With valentines Day upcoming, I may rent a studio and offer limited boudoir photography. Let me know if there is interest.

My Sunday was spent on the sofa under a comforter, staying warm and resting to prepare for the week ahead. My joints have been aggravated and I have pushed through to keep appointments and support those that need me, so today I missed church and supported me. The Lord got my time through devotion and prayer, and I offered my presence to the dogs while they played, even though we did not walk our usual 2 miles. Dishes are mostly done, after a week of stacking up there were quite a few. Menu is done and groceries ordered. My weekly schedule is a little out of alignment as I am catching up on tutorials and workshops and searching the Lord's heart on what my business looks like to Him. Because if the Lord's not in it, I don't want to waste another minute working at it! Luke 1:37 "For with God nothing is impossible." Even a photographer with Rheumatoid Arthritis glorifying God in all she does.

Have a good night and welcome the morning with a clean heart. Blessings, Gail O.

 

]]>
(Gail Lynn Photography) Babies Baby Day Direction Family Headshots New Purpose https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2020/12/a-new-day Wed, 09 Dec 2020 22:43:17 GMT
Catching up https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2020/12/catching-up

Yesterday flew by, so I am touching base with you today. I chased a lot of squirrels today, am hanging someplace between fall and Christmas, catching up on the house, the website and plans for 2021. I went to sleep last night listening to Romans 12. Most of it is highlighted in my Bible because I need to know and remember that as a Christian, kindness is the best fruit of all, others' needs are more important than mine, not to be lazy (slothful) in business, always trusting God in hope, always quick to pray in every situation and not reach for the glass of wine or the cookie first...

 This is all that is left of a Christmas swag I bought to put on top of my curtains for the season. My boys are quick, and didn't even move the diapers I stacked on top of them when they grabbed the package and ran. I have a new pair of glasses and smart watch on because they are quick, love to chew, get bored easily, and just don't care how angry I get at them...

When your joints hurt, standing in front of a sink, lifting dishes, is the last thing you want to do. But the week worth of dishes is down to one sink load. Also, when I am healthy, I would rather tar the roof, or scrub toilets than do dishes. But Kitchen is clean and ready to bake Christmas cookies!

Diapers to be re-elasticized, one of the swags left to hang, fall decor to put away. So much to do. How are you staying organized balancing home and business?

Kitchen clutter needing to be transitioned from messy to organized....

I already have my planner for next year. It combines my devotion journal with an organized plan, goal setting and evaluation. It is Christ centered, because as we put God first, do everything for Him, and honor His will as we plan and do, we will prosper and be blessed.

Most people will do anything for someone that values them and appreciates them. 

 

Christmas Photos for a select few. Baby girl is too cute. So this is a glimpse into my messy, busy life. I can take this chaos and create order through Christ who is my health and strength. Yours, Gail O

 

]]>
(Gail Lynn Photography) Appreciate Balance Christmas Daily Dose Dishes Fall Gratitude Journal Pain https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2020/12/catching-up Wed, 09 Dec 2020 22:22:45 GMT
Participation vs. Investment https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2020/9/participation-vs-investment Firstly - I have many photos I took to go with this post, but my card reader decided not to read them. So, to keep this interesting, I will add unrelated images for you to enjoy. 

Reading: "the answers to your deepest longings" by Lysa TerKeurst and the Proverbs 31 Ministries Team.

Watching: "Living Proof" by Matt Embry, his documented journey with MS.

Listening: Elevation Worship's "Graves into Gardens album". Yes, the entire album. If you are having a hard day or need a spiritual pick-me-up, turn it on and crank it up!!!!

The dog pool was green and muddy and gross. It is early in the day, I don’t want to get dirty or wet. So as I gently pull the side of the pool down to drain, so far so good, water is coming out, I am still clean. I was participating in pool water reconstitution, but it wasn’t costing me a thing. When the water was low enough to lift the sides up and dump, again, I was directing the water to the front, where I wasn’t. Well, the water chose to come out of each side instead. Result? I am now covered in mud and pool water. I went from participating, to investing in the process of providing clean water for the dogs (and cats, and rodents, and birds) to enjoy.

Juvenile sports now reward for participation. Some schools too, passing children to the next level without the work to back it for various reasons. People get positions and ministries because they were there and available, the right age, or the right look, but they don’t really have the resume or skills to back the appointment. (Cool down, It’s word).

In Matthew 21:19 describes a fig tree that participated, but did not invest. Pretending to be a fig tree, it had leaves, but no fruit. Jesus went up to it, to get a snack, and found no fruit on it. He proceeded to speak "Let no fruit grow on thee henceforth, forever." The fig tree withered immediately. Really? It was still viable, still pretty (today’s philosophy, don’t hate on the fig tree). But no fruit is an ineffective fig tree. Taking up space. No explicit value.

We pray, but see little results because we are participating, not invested. We sing the songs, read the scriptures, but where is the sacrifice. In Matthew 17:21, and Mark 9:29, Jesus told His disciples that some demons are only cast out by prayer and fasting. Ooh, fasting (No! Not my food, sad face), an investment in the present and future.

I am guilty of trying easy. I have been cast out of my ministries, my appointments, even some of my familial roles, because I was participating in comfort, but resisted when it cost me something, or when I felt threatened, or God tested my pride.

In order to be effective and prosperous, there needs to be some healing, breaking of sallow ground, breaking of strongholds and past demons. There needs to be some sacrifice, some heart work, some investment.

Pride, offense, and fear, are some of the little bugs that will steal your ability to produce good fruit. Think deep. Do you participate, or do you invest all that you have into producing the fruit God has ordained for your life?

I have to go change now. Be better. Be blessed.

Gail O

 

]]>
(Gail Lynn Photography) engagement Fig fruit Grow investment. participate Pride Spirit tree https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2020/9/participation-vs-investment Tue, 22 Sep 2020 22:36:46 GMT
Morning Has Broken https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2020/8/morning-has-broken The quiet of the morning is a gift. His mercies are renewed every morning. Before demands take us over, we can sit in His presence and become remade, blessed, filled with His purpose. Mark 1:35 tells us that Jesus rose a ”great while before day” and went to a place of solitude. He submitted His human to the spirit of His father. What we did yesterday, last week, ten years ago does not matter to the Lord once you lay it at His feet. He is faithful, He is forgiving, He is forever our God, loving Father, protector and champion.

Listening to: dry bones rattling by Elevation Worship.

Watching: The Closer and Rizzoli and Isles reruns. Again. It’s all about the writing.

Reading: Unforgettable photograph by George Lange and Scott Mowbray

I love photography! I love people, I love to shoot, and I love to create wonderful art with some of the images. With the revolutionary cameras on cell phones and digital cameras, many photographers are doing everything but shooting to continue to pay the bills. I understand. When I ponder what things I could possibly do to bring in revenue besides releasing the shutter, all I can come up with is ‘shoot.’ So, I practice, I learn, I put myself out there and I wait for the right persons to find me. I always have work, for I seek opportunities, but they are not always paid opportunities. But God.

Last weekend, I documented a baby shower. Let me extol the ingenuity of Amazon, who provided us with a ‘party in a box‘. Everything we needed to decorate the house was in one box, including the sign-in poster.

My daughter dipped Rice Krispies and pretzels in candy melts and we prepared a nacho bar for sustenance.

We celebrated my baby girl’s baby girl, who is due with my great baby girl in September.

There were photo booth props in the party in a box too. People who hate photos of themselves, will pose with props. Usually. We took photos of each guest with our baby mama, just like we did at birthday parties years ago. We were blessed with the turn out, the gifts and the love that was ‘showered’ upon Mikayla, and are so grateful.

This was a day to be remembered. And I have the receipts (proof).

 

 

]]>
(Gail Lynn Photography) Baby shower Family Friends Party Sunday https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2020/8/morning-has-broken Fri, 28 Aug 2020 18:12:44 GMT
Mid Week https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2020/8/mid-week Mid - Week

Disclaimer: This is NOT a religious blog. This is a place to explore the musings of a photographer that does everything (or attempts to) from a Christian perspective. “And whatever you do, do it full out for the Lord, not for (approval of) other people. Col. 3:23.

Every time I have sat down for the past 3 weeks, to update you, I get distracted, or busy editing. I have a squirrel problem.

Photo by Artem Beliaikin from Pexel

I have been outgrowing a habit of mourning the past, learning to live in the present and trust that my Heavenly Father will cover me and console me when needed. Where are you on this? Do you long for what felt like better days? Today I finally realized I mourn because it was a happy time in MY life. I miss the cuddles and hugs and jokes, all the little things that create great memories. But time moves on. People change their priorities, desires, the people they want to spend time with. Just like anger, wistful revisiting of the past seems to be born out of selfishness.

 

“Let your speech always be with grace, as though seasoned with salt, so that you will know how to answer every person.” Colassians 4:6. I went to Baltimore three weeks ago for a wedding on a yacht (more of that in a minute) and for three days I did fun things on very little sleep. As a sort of testimony flying there and home again, I wore a t-shirt that says “Ya’ll Just Need Jesus.” Mostly, I got stares, one or two comments, but no real interaction, which is OK. However, when you wear a shirt that tells people that you are different, you better be different. Speaking with grace is not easy when you are exhausted, and barely strong enough to walk on your own. Twice, while wearing that t-shirt, I got snarky and short with people, not representing the shirt, or Jesus well at all. And at that moment I realized that I acted like that most of the time not too long ago, using such excuses as tired or hungry or stress, which are not good excuses when representing a patient, loving God. Good lesson. I am sorry.


I have spent two weeks revamping this website, I hope you see a difference. It seems that for every item I fix, another error pops up. The goal is that you will be comfortable, find what you need easily and be informed when you find me on the great web to see what I do or what project is currently happening. I am not crazy about the connect with me page, because it is a pre-built, unfriendly template, but I did my best for now and will improve it later.

Pricing is a bear because you cannot please everybody. I want to be fair, but I would like to be able to pay my bills too. The need to see a price list is reasonable, however, my goal is that you are more interested in the quality of what I deliver more than a bottom line. For the month of August, I do have a special that for a limited time would cover any social media images, head shots, a short senior session, children’s milestones, cake smashes and couple portraits.

Three weeks ago, I was in Baltimore, Maryland. I love the east coast, so serene and Olde Americana. The people there are genuine and nice. I was there for a Jason Lanier workshop, ‘A Real Wedding workshop’ on a yacht. This was a great experience, and I will be posting photos several more times before I will feel done.  Once Jason posts his wedding images, I will be able to post images of the couple. For now, it will be images of the area. I got up early the wedding day because three of us went out and to capture the sunrise, the images need to be found. I believe I tucked the card away someplace safe; the location is yet to be discovered. I know where they are not. I wanted to shop downtown Annapolis, or go to the beach, but after breakfast, it was all about the nap and getting the gear ready to go. (Another reminder that the camera bag does not pack itself.)

I love church steeple crosses. I have so many saved in folders.

It was hot, and we talked about everything photographic and business minded.

Sony-mirrorless-camera. So light, such clarity, I am saving up!

My friend, Amy, from Kentucky.

Sunset on the water was unbelievable.

Miss Emily is a model/photographer, Jason Lanier's right hand, and administrative assistant. She is an amazing, beautiful, gracious young lady.

That's all for now. Stay-tuned.

Gail O.

]]>
(Gail Lynn Photography) Annapolis Baltimore East coast Habits Jason Lanier Mourning Ocean Squirrels Water Wedding Yacht https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2020/8/mid-week Thu, 13 Aug 2020 02:30:40 GMT
Guidance Optional (or is it?) https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2020/7/guidance-optional-or-is-it Days melt away without accountability. I think it has been a day or two without devotion and prayer, and it’s been five. June 29th was the last blogpost, and it really only feels like 3 days. Human beings need to be held accountable, or we just go our own way and do our own thing. We are living in a day where evil deeds are prolific, but someone else is blamed. It’s like a child walking up and slapping his mother, but blaming his dad because he is a bad leader. Using bad examples to become bad examples feeds evil intent. Instead, we should look at bad examples and work at becoming better. Romans 12:17 tells us not to reward evil for evil, but to provide good and honest things in the sight of all men.

I know how to get places, but sometimes I will turn on the navigator. Besides directions, navigators warn us about roadblocks, problems ahead, speed limits, and when the next turn or detour is. I am better with direction than I am without. I have been told my compass is off kilter, and I am directionally challenged. When I first started the business, I bought a camera and ran with it. No mentors, no books, no one that went before me to guide and help me with business sense, technique, or anything to do with photography. My husband showed me how to set up and balance a spread sheet, but I never did it.

A few years ago, I met Jason Lanier and his wife at WPPI in Vegas. He opened my eyes and I discovered mentorship. The main thing I held onto from him is to work hard, but in the time, and don’t expectgreatness to come out of lazy. That is Biblical. Even when the Lord performed miracles, there was work involved. Not so we can boast or take credit, all glory belongs to the Lord, but to see how much the requested need was really wanted. How desperate are you for good things - a change of life, or something to make life better? Are you looking for help (navigation) or hoping things happen on their own? After my encounter with JL, I have found photographers whose style impressed me, and have been constantly learning from them. I have gone into debt buying tutorials, editing tools, and workshops (a habit I have since stopped).

We all need guidance. We are a lost, selfish bunch, mostly doing whatever we want to, until something or someone changes our direction, perception or mind. I was driving home from Tucson and I was on a stretch of road without speed limit signs, so I turned on the navigator and I received what I am sharing from my spirit. I have been studying the Bible on how to be closer to our Heavenly Father and have found the closer I get to our creator, the further I want to get from things that are not good for me. I want more solid food, less junk that does not nourish. I thanked the Lord for giving me the navigator comparison and I thought wow, this is cool. That’s when my mind heard, “Good, let me use you.” Unfortunately, my sarcastic self came back too quickly, “Why not, everyone else does.” Oops. I need more work.

Some scriptures on needing to follow in the steps of Jesus:

John 14:6 Jesus is the only way to reach the Father.

Jeremiah 21:8 “And to this people you will say, ‘the Lord says, behold I set before you the way of life and the way of death.’”

Psalms 139:24 “See if there is any wicked thing in me and lead me in the way everlasting.”

Psalms 1:6 “For the Lord knows the way of the righteous; but the way of the ungodly will perish.”

GPS = God's Protection System

]]>
(Gail Lynn Photography) Bible Godspeaks GPS Holy Spirit lost Mentor Show me the way https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2020/7/guidance-optional-or-is-it Sat, 11 Jul 2020 23:25:49 GMT
Finish Well https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2020/6/finish-well I don’t want to wake up with a to do list in my head, but I do. The whole purpose of rousing early and walking is to spend time with Jesus, clear my head, set my soul and prep for the day. Some days, there is so much competition up there it is distressing. Encounter for Today has auditory devotions that take the scripture of the day and expound on it, helping clear the mind and get me back on track. Then I read ‘Draw near to God’ devotions, and the day is back on a good turn.


 

This week is so busy, I really need to reorganize the schedule so that time is not wasted and each task is efficiently completed. I have read and established so many organizational lists and charts, but nothing stuck until block scheduling. this makes sense to me. For years I make to do list after to do list, but nothing could do it for me. I like crossing things off of lists but it wasn't productive. You actually have to take action. Now, if I do something not on the list, I write it down so I can cross it off. Yep, I'm one of those. I confess. Changing my methods is helping me defeat procrastination. Do it now. No excuses. The more you do, the more you want to do. Simple principals work. Committing everything to the Lord gives the ideas energy.

Week two block scheduling. I am up by 5:30 am. I do need to find a spot for breakfast. I still waste time, but more is getting done day to day, and the things that work, really work. Making positive changes is so rewarding, it baffles me when so many people stay stuck in non-productive, self-defeating life systems. 

Dishes are finally done, and the kitchen and stove are clean. For the three hours it took me to soak and scrub and sparkle, I promised myself I will not let it get this bad ever again! Aha, more progress. So why do we keep repeating mind numbing talks over and over, fight the same battles, get irritated with the same people, without moving any rocks? Life's great mystery of human behavior repeats because you just haven’t determined it is important enough to be done. We can’t control other people, their actions, attitudes or behaviors, but we can change us. We can change how we think, what we think, what we do, and through shifting the currents, finally changing who we are. 

My husband turns 74 on Sunday, so I need to order a cake and figure out how to celebrate, since he won’t leave the house. When I self quarantined for months, he went to church without me, to the store, and did all my errands. Now that I am active, he won’t leave the house, except to work. We will see what finally comes up. I can't wait!

The call to persevere is upon us. Some people are just getting by, but others are running on ahead determined to make a difference. I have been serving the Lord for 40 years and have seen many who have gotten discouraged or lazy and give up. 

II Cor 4:1

 Let a man so account of us, as of the ministers of Christ, and stewards of the mysteries of God.

Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful.

We all start out in church for a reason. Mom and dad made us go to church and read us all the stories. It felt good in service. A friend led us in to a service and the word took root and grew. So many things, on the other hand distract and discourage us from being consistent and faithful to the end. Matthew 10:22 tells us that only those that endure until the end shall be saved. There is some enduring to do. People will dislike us because we don't do what they do, go where they go, or think about what they think about. There is a friend that I miss with all of my heart. But she got too busy for church. Her priorities have changed. She stopped caring about how Jesus would like her to live. She doesn't like to spend time with me anymore. It doesn't matter how we started out, really. Conviction, repentance, and baptism get us right with God. What matters is that we finish well.

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio

We do better when we surround ourselves with like people. There is a saying, if you are the smartest, strongest, or prettiest one in the room, find another room. Iron sharpens iron. Start it with the Lord, and keep it going. 

Gail O.

 

]]>
(Gail Lynn Photography) Blessing Faith Finish Follow Organize Plan Race Schedule https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2020/6/finish-well Mon, 29 Jun 2020 21:42:45 GMT
The Pursuit of Peace https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2020/6/the-pursuit-of-peace

Reading: Drawing Near (intimacy with God) by Jennifer Clarke, Business by Design (Applying Gods Wisdom for True Success) by Raymond Harris

Watching: The Lost Husband & Think Like a Dog (Josh Duhamel, sigh)

Each morning, after I walk with the dogs, drink the coffee, and listen to the devotion of the day, setting the tone for the day, then I shut them outside. Without the dogs wrestling on my feet, I sit down to study the word in peace. Quiet, and peace. Up until recently, there has been music blaring, or game show watching or movies in the background. Lately, I have been enjoying the silence. Quiet allows one to hear their own thoughts. Quiet allows us to hear from the Lord, too.

There seems to be so much chaos in the world today. So many groups with their own agendas, literally fighting to have their say. With so many divisions, there is much separation. Race, culture, belief systems, or just a restlessness that needs to be released or harnessed. Separation leads to isolation and fractured thinking. With unity, comes power, agreement and action. We became a nation by becoming united in action. Custer was defeated when Indian Nations united, despite their enmity. As God’s people pray and unify, there will be a turn in the atmosphere. In the middle of the storm, there is peace, when the Lord is present.

I discovered block scheduling that designates times and days for whatever your basic rules or tasks are. Grouping activities together, on certain days and times, gives a consistency that creates habits. There is a place for everything. Organization gives peace to your space. I also see where I waste time or what may not be working. I realized right away that there was no room for breakfast or exercising. Oops, not OK.

The goal is to always be ready instead of having to get ready in a stressful, rushed, overwhelmed way (chaos). The camera stays charged with a card ready, so I can grab and run when needed. ‘Do it now’ is also taking residence in my processes. Why come back to do something if you are right there and have two minutes.

Now, my house is not company ready. That will take some consistent doing. If I had friends that came over, or a social circle or any other reason to raise it to the top of my priority list, I would. It sparkles when I have a photo shoot in the studio, but there is stress that goes with that one until I catch up. Whatever time we don’t plan for, will be filled. Have you ever sat down for a minute, turned on the television, only to realize that hours have gone by? Ephesians 5:15-16 “Be watchful and discreet. Do not be foolish, but wise. Redeem the time because the days are evil.”

The morning for me is always walk, devotions, exercise. Psalm 119:148 “I am awake early so I may meditate on your promise.” Before the day gets busy and interruptions threaten schedules and peace. The rest of the day needs some honing. But it is progress, and the process is improving.

Do you study to be pleasing to the Lord, and think about who may need your help, who needs the love of a savior, and how to reflect the life of Jesus? I love the phrase “use your powers for good, not evil.” We have such potential within us to be unlocked by spiritual forces. And, honestly, which one we feed will be our driving force. Seek peace and pursue it.

 

]]>
(Gail Lynn Photography) Chaos Early Feed God Grow Peace Plan Schedule Spirit https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2020/6/the-pursuit-of-peace Sat, 27 Jun 2020 23:06:05 GMT
What has your attention? https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2020/6/what-has-your-attention

Many lives are an example of passive living, filled with a lot of disappointment, complaining and little action. This behavior is usually learned, and most people, though miserable, really don’t want to change their circumstance. Why? Because they are comfortable. Ex-cons go back to jail - because it is familiar and safe. Some victims, even though not necessarily safe, will stay with their abusers because it is what they know. Divorced couples repeatedly return to their rejected spouses. It’s human nature. It’s in the Bible with examples all around us.

I accepted Jesus at a church service when I was 14, but the way I lived never changed. I really did not know better. No one discipled me, exampled a Godly life to me, or explained that Christianity was more than “accepting Jesus as my Savior”. So, even though I was introduced to the gospel message, and the love of a Savior, I was the same girl I had always been. But God (love this phrase) never gave up on me. Even though the outside never changed, the Lord had a plan and kept me from the results of my decisions (mostly).

Everything we want in life comes with the steps to obtain it. We can say we want to be something like a rock star or dancer or even president, but unless we complete the proven steps to get there, nothing is going to change. We can say we want (accept) a husband or a friend into our life, but unless we become intimate, interested, and invest in them, it’s just another Thursday.

Jesus came, preached, performed miracles, died and resurrected to show us a “new way of life as a human”, as Tim Mackie has put it. Under the old way, we were selfish, judgmental, had a lot of rules, yet, could not please God. Under the new way Jesus created and exampled, the principle was more simple. Love God, deny yourself and love others. Bam! Don’t steal, don’t lie, don’t be an obnoxious lifeform. Help, do not hinder. We have a choice to live generous, kind, humble lives that do please God. Psalm 8:3-4 asks the question of the day: who are we that God would want to spend time with us, much less take us to heaven, with Him, forever? We aren’t even God’s real kids, unless you are Jewish, but that’s another subject for another day.

Without God, we are full of fear and anger, needy, not seeing anything wrong with our behavior or lifestyle. With God, through Jesus, we learn to want what He wants, love like He loves, and give like He gave. All of Himself for an outrageous, ungrateful people (sound familiar?).

We will worship actors, rock stars, and people of influence, while we ignore the one who actually created everything and has complete control over all the worlds and all they contain. Jeremiah 10:7 states that there is no leader, nor ruler, nor wise man that is like our God, and King of nations.

So, in conclusion, who do you follow? What do you want your life to look like? A good life won’t happen by accident, even though life feels, sometimes, like one accident after another. Spend some time with the one who created you and everything else in your world. If your life is fine, and you don’t go to church, pray, or spend time with the Lord, chances are that you have someone praying for you. Because life is created by and for the glory of God alone. Where is your path heading? How much effort are you contributing to the quality of your life? Are you just hoping everything works out in your favor?

Read this:

“Pay attention to my words, my son. Do not stop reading them, keep them in your heart. Because they are life and health to those that find them.” Proverbs 4:20-22 (paraphrased).

 

]]>
(Gail Lynn Photography) accident amen chaos good life return to God scripture world in danger https://www.gailynn.com/blog/2020/6/what-has-your-attention Thu, 25 Jun 2020 16:40:20 GMT