Today I was asked a question that usually makes me cringe: “How’s the business?”
The photography business. The business that has essentially been 13 years in the making..since I graduated with my degree in Photographic Technology in 2001. Except for the 5ish years that I stopped pursuing it because I was sick of the ‘business’ part of it and got married, moved to VA and pursued other things instead. So I guess more like the past 7-8 years since photography starting creeping back into my life again.
When someone asks me this question, it usually makes me cringe because I am no where near the mental picture I’ve had for where I hoped to be by now. I’m no where near what ‘people’ would consider successful. But today I said “Great”! You know why? Because I’ve decided that I’m defining what success means from now on.
Because I have chosen to put my marriage as a higher priority and have invested energy into making sure it is healthy when I could’ve been investing the energy in my work instead. And hubby and I celebrated our ten year anniversary this past January and we’re in the best place we’ve ever been.
Because 7 years ago I was so sick that I couldn’t even sit up well and wasn’t sure if I would ever have a ‘normal’ life again. But here I am, living my life and am in the best place I’ve ever been. (I’m not sure it would be considered ‘normal’, but I’m at least much farther than struggling to sit up ;)…and besides what is normal anyway?!?! )
Because I’ve said ‘Here am I. Send Me!’ and have allowed God to mess up my plans. In life and on a daily basis. I’ve chosen to invest in people because God has placed them in my path, even when it’s meant an interruption to my day.
Because this life is not about me. I’m here to be used by God. Period.
I’m here to be His mouthpiece to speak life and encouragement into the lifeless and discouraged. I’m here to be His provision in the form of a fresh hot ham, egg & cheese bagel when there’s a homeless man who probably hasn’t eaten much in days, digging in the trash looking for food. (which my amazing husband actually did recently…I seriously love his heart for people). I’m here to be His place of refuge as I open up my far-less-than-perfect, Pinterest-would-fall-over-and-die-if-it-were-alive-and-saw-it house so that people can come stay and feel welcomed, loved and taken care of and hopefully leave in a better place than when they arrived.
THAT is what I want to consider successful from this point forward. That I am living my life in a way that glorifies and worships my Heavenly Father. Not if I have a certain number of people who know who I am, or appointments on my calendar, or money in my bank account. Because what will all of that matter in eternity if I haven’t used it to make a difference.
Image Credit: Erin Kass Photography