In years past, this season has always been an exciting one for me. For so many years, summer meant no school, lazy days by the pool, late night ice cream runs, and more beach trips than I could count on one hand. If at any point work got hard in the spring (which of course, it always did), I would just think… 5 more weeks until I’m laying on the beach getting my tan on and not having a care in the world. This year, though, things are different. With that change comes a huge praise, but it’s also a bittersweet transition.
For a long time we’ve been praying that God would open doors that would lead Justin to land a full-time job after graduating college this December. Justin hadn’t held many internship positions for multiple reasons, but as graduation drew closer we were both praying that God would just give him SOMETHING. That answer came last month and it all happened so quickly that before we knew it, Justin was offered three different jobs in three separate departments of an amazing company and he was able to choose which one he wanted, and his start date was set for just 2 weeks later. This all happened within the span of 5 days! God totally answered our prayers beyond what we expected and I’ve never been happier or more proud of Justin and where his hard work, dedication, and endearing personality have taken him. I know I’m with someone incredible because I often wish I could be like him.
With this change obviously comes a transition. I’ve been used to just hopping on a plane and taking off whenever I pleased the past 22 years of my life, and although Justin hasn’t been quite as carefree as I have, he’s been able to take his 3 weeks off every summer to go on his family vacation to Wildwood, New Jersey; to Indiana with me; and often later in the summer, another beach trip or short weekend vacation. But now? We’re entering unchartered territory. And it’s exciting and scary and fun all at the same time. Instead of wanting to go run around the beach with no responsibilities, we want to work. There’s never been a time that we’ve both been able to make decent money together (college student probz) and I think I’m actually excited to be an adult this summer. It’s weird to not be heading to beautiful Wildwood this year, but I have three weddings booked that week so we kinda knew it would be difficult to make that happen this year. I’m sure we’ll be heading there for another purpose soon enough. We’re still hoping for Indiana or a late summer weekend trip down South, but it’s so much harder to plan when you’re starting something new!
I’m thankful that this summer, God has called me to be patient and wait on Him. To seek Him out in the unknown and let Him lead when I have no idea where He’s going. There have been some changes going on in my own life and heart lately, so the both of us are just walking into this new season of life with so much hope and joy. I can’t wait for Justin to have his weekends and evenings back as he starts a full-time internship with normal hours!!! For the past three years, he’s worked retail, so that schedule has always been unpredictable and hard to plan things around as the days/times he worked would change every two weeks. I’m really excited that this schedule will be much more stable and easy on Justin’s schedule. But right now, I’m a wedding photographer… I work evenings and weekends. I honestly have no idea how that’s going to be, but I’m grateful as anything that we get to experience what this is like BEFORE we get married. It’s almost like God is sending us on a trial run and saying, “Okay… this is what things would be like if you held the same jobs you do now. Is this what you want?”
I have no idea what I’m going to want after the summer is over or where God intends me to go next, but I’m not worried. Although the human part of me fears never seeing Justin, my soul rests in the refuge of the Lord’s peace. I can’t wait to look back a year from now, a wedding band on my left hand and my husband laying by my side every morning, and say, “God totally knew what He was doing.” I say that now and I know it to be true. But I can’t wait to look back and see how that truth played out in our lives.
So this summer, I’m ready to be intentional about my time. I’m ready to stop and smell the roses and take a Sunday off every now and then. I’m ready to fully hand my heart and my business over to God to do with what He may. I know He has the BEST plan and I so desperately desire to seek it, find it, and live it out… and leave behind anything that would get in the way of following Him. I cling to this promise as the next few months unfold…
“You will keep in perfect peace
all who trust in you,
all whose thoughts are fixed on you.”