I remember when my friend, Elizabeth-Ann contacted me and told me about an exciting idea she was working on. This dream involved taking a bunch of young women photographers who loved Jesus, and bringing them all together for a week to relax, get away from the norm, and LEARN. I’ve always had a passion for high school age girls. Lukas & I have volunteered with the high school group at our church for four years, and have done many different camps. So when she asked me if I would be willing to help teach at this retreat at a lake in Alabama, I didn’t have to pray very long before I answered an enthusiastic, “YES!” The SHINE Pursuit 31 retreat was born.
I can’t believe just three days ago I was saying goodbye to all these amazing ladies. This retreat was amazing in so many ways. For me, the Lord used it to show me how utterly dependent I am on Him. I had many back to back trips in a row that seemed at first, overwhelming. First a week in New Mexico at my own high school summer camp, then I flew straight to North Carolina to shoot my cousin’s wedding. After a couple days there, I flew straight to Alabama, still tweaking some of my sessions on the way. All the fears I had going into those crazy two weeks of travel were calmed as I knew people were praying for me, and that the Lord is always faithful to give us the strength we need for whatever He calls us to do. I can honestly say I have never felt BETTER than these past two weeks!
The girls. The GIRLS! They rocked my socks off. From all over the place, different states (and even Canada!), I was blown away by their boldness, eagerness to learn, & desire to give glory to God in all they do. From teaching sessions to dance parties, worship music to one on one mentoring, headshot shootouts to jumping in the lake at 2am, we had a blast.
Thank you, Elizabeth-Ann, for taking me with you on this journey. You’re amazing!! Thank you my incredible friend, Karen Stott for starting Pursuit 31 and backing all our hopes for SHINE. I am so thankful for your friendship! And thank you Showit & Organic Bloom for sponsoring our retreat!
Besides the photos, make sure to check out the recap video below!! See you next year at SHINE ’13!!
Thanks to Amy Joy Hamilton for these last two photos of me!