Monday, November 03, 2008


It has been quite some time since I have come to the blog writing board completely spontaneous. Somehow, in my "old age," I have developed a certain sense of order and formality when it comes to these posts. However, seeing as my natural personality is to write about whatever enters my mind at any given second, this entry will fulfill those tendencies.

I will format this session as I often do my e-mails to others... I call it organized chaos. Or spontaneous categories. Take your pick. At least it's topical this way.

Oh, Snap
Ironically so, I found out a few nights ago that I was about 2 years behind in ordering pictures for my personal photo albums. This is absurd, considering my profession. However, I decided part of my process of enjoyment of pictures is usually about 75% of the way fulfilled by the time I experience life, snap the photo, load it onto my computer, view it, coo over it, bring it into photoshop, play, play, play, and then eventually share via web or other methods. By then, most outlets of my photo(s) have been exhausted and the furthest thing from my mind is to develop the print. But just recently, I decided it was time.

Another evident hobby of mine (most of my friends might call it an obsession) is to look at pictures. I'm not just talking about going through images online or viewing pretty framed prints. I'm talking about good ol' photo albums stuffed full of wonderful memories. I love them. I could look through them over and over and never become bored of their contents, especially when it holds some sort of sentimental value to me. Therefore, when I was reviewing one of my photo albums with a few friends the other evening, I deteremined it was about time to get some of my pictures developed.

Here's the problem. As stated earlier, I was about 2 years behind in this process. Currently, as I type, a total of 870 photos are uploading to Snapfish. That's a lot, yes, I know. But what do you expect. I spend my whole life taking pictures, so actually, this number should be pretty impressive when you evaluate how many hours upon hours of life I have captured in the past 2 years and from that I have only found nearly 900 ways of expressing it. Ok, it still sounds like a lot, even when I put it that way... especially when we round up to 1,000.

I like to think of pictures as snap shots of time that is locked away forever, as instant memory reminders. One photo can bring back a hundred memories, evoke a laugh, cue a sigh, or invite a tear. We've all looked at a picture before and have pointed to it and said, "Yeah, remember when..." Pictures hold so much power as visual reminders, communicators, and connectors.

This Weather
Has really been more than we could ask for. Seriously, I love it. I believe we broke some sort of record today. The way I see it, once the cold weather settles in, that's it, folks, until about May. So let's soak this up while we have it. I went on a walk at about 3:30 with a friend, and everywhere we looked we were awed at the intense, vibrant colors surrounding us. All of the sudden, everything pops. My friend remarked, "Every Fall, I think that I see a new color that I have never seen before in nature." Could be true... maybe God secretly adds another color to the palette every year around this time.

Anyway, I'm not complaining about this warmth but I was hoping that it would be cold this week. Here's why:

I'm Going to Arizona!
Next week. I leave on Monday. So, I was hoping maybe we'd get a few inches of snow and then I would be extremely ready to dive into warmer temperatures. Ok, I knew the likelihood of that happening was pretty slim, but I hoped.

Anyway, I'll be out there for about a week visiting family and conducting some photography sessions, so I am excited about that. Arizona is one of my all-time favorite locations to visit. Let me point out that in the summer, it is terribly hot. However, November is golden. I should be experiencing blue skies and about 80 degrees while I'm there. And the scenery is just breath taking. I recently had family from AZ visit us in IL, and I feel for them. When you live in a beautiful land all your life, whenever you travel, the viewing pleasures you get are inevitably taken down a few notches. Seriously, they see flat land and corn fields on vacation, and I get to go see mountains, cactii, and desert creatures. Yea!

I'll possibly post some stories and photos while there... so be looking for that next week.

Election Day
I have mixed feelings about all of this. First things first, if you wear your "I Voted" sticker to Starbucks tomorrow, they reward your patriotism with a free cup of coffee. So if you need an energy boost before driving into work tomorrow or your afternoon is dragging by, you know where to go (so long as you have voted).

On a more serious note, this presedential decision presents quite a stir in most people's minds and hearts... and rightfully so. Our country could drastically change in the coming weeks and months, and as Christians, we have got to stay on guard. My main encouragement is to stay true to the Word. When I first became a Christian, I had monthly meetings with the elder of my church, and he always asked me the question, "Taryn, how can they tell what money is counterfeit?"

Ponder, ponder, ponder.

"They study the real thing."

That principle applies to so many areas, and I think it is vital in this situation. If we, as Christians, are to truly know and practice what is TRUTH, we must be able to discern what is wrong by knowing what is right. Anything other than truth is counterfeit, and we will be able to actively assess these inaccuracies when we have studied the Word of God.

Satan would love for us to become one of both extremes: either fearful and anxious to the point in which we become paralyzed, or riled up and angry about the way things are handled politically, as if we ourselves could possibly do a better job running the country if things were just handled differently. The devil wants us either fearful or distracted, and either way he has us, our minds are off of one thing: the Truth. And that is his goal.

The idea of keeping our eyes on the truth applies so well to our current situation. Regardless of what happens with who is elected as our forthcoming president, one thing is for certain: God is in control, and He is true, and His Word is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword... and it is living. No matter what is in store for our nation in the near future, let's hold hands as Christians and openly embrace the Truth that is available to us right now. As fellow Christians, we may have different beliefs politically, but one bond we have in common is Christ. That will always trump all else. May this be a time that brings us together stronger instead of it being a tool for Satan to evoke anxiety and annoyance in our hearts.

Continue to challenge yourself and grow yourself in the Word, and memorize it. We all have the opportunity to own Bibles in our homes and worship in churches, a real privilege we have in America. Memorize Scripture and lock it away in your heart so that it lives inside of you and reminds you of the Truth. We may end up with a leader of our nation that makes us uneasy, but the Leader of our life will never fail us.

I'll be back soon...
There was about a 30 second pause after that last subject tangent, and my mind is completley blank, so that's my cue to wrap it up rather than force out another topic that wasn't on the tip of my mind. I'll be back soon, don't worry. Love you all.



Jill Foley said...

I love all that you wrote, but especially the part about Election day...thank you for that!

Luke said...

I just voted...and my stomach's going around in circles. I have to keep reminding myself that God is in complete control and that He raises up and He casts down.

Rebekah said...

in so many ways you remind me of my sister tami. and one of them is your gift for expressing truth in a powerful way. thank you for what you wrote about the importance of the Word. It was such an encouragement and I was filled with gratitude for the freedom I still have to read and consume it when ever I want. thanks!

Vanessa said...

Thanks for this post...especially the election part. I watched the news this morning and was incredibly discouraged. Thanks for the "pick me up".

tamika paige said...

great post, taryn! thanks for posting it.

Anonymous said...

You have such a talent for writing and expressing your thoughts. Keep it up sister!!! I am encouraged and challenged with your thoughts. Ditto with your thoughts on the election and soaking in the Word of God.
hugs and Love

Heather said...

Thanks for the post. Truly from your heart. You have such a talent of using words to connect with people by evoking emotion and/or thought. God will use this gift He has given you to do great things. I just know it.

And if you are going to quote me, at least give me credit. :) For APA format of citing a conversation take a look at

Janell said...

Hey Taryn, thanks for your comment on my blog. Mind if I add you to my blog roll. Hope you have fun in AZ!