You know when God speaks to you and you don't even know? Or maybe you do and you just don't listen? Yah that's me.
I started my photography business in 2005 as a way to stay home with my then 2 year old and why not do something that I've always loved? It quickly evolved into photographing weddings and by January of 2010 God told me to let it all go. I didn't want to believe that's what He was saying as I put so much of my time and energy in to the business being 5 years in, but after wrestling with it for a few weeks I knew I had to obey as He'd take it away somehow if it wasn't His will for me. So I let it go. That didn't mean I didn't still love photography and would stop shooting completely, just for the business.
Over the course of the next year I continued to shoot, this time more with film and more personal work. I was blogging it and ended up doing a few film shoots, attending a workshop and by 2011 decided to give this business a go once again, this time with film and much more under God's direction. Now that another 5 years has gone by, it's not surprising that I'm headed once again in a different direction. I had been struggling the last couple of years trying to figure out how I could shoot more, not just get more “work” but actually shoot more of what I wanted and all on film because I was in a way stuck on it. Obsessed at times. Prideful even.
When the thoughts would enter my mind that maybe I should shoot digital for certain occasions, to be able to bless people with my time only and not a lot of cost, I would consider maybe that's what God wanted?, but I knew what I wanted and thought “why would He care about that?” I don't necessarily think He would if I wasn't so caught up with it and determined to do it this way, my way. I've said from the beginning I wanted this business to be His but that's exactly what I wasn't allowing it to be. It was all about me and what I wanted. One thing I've learned is that if my priorities aren't aligned with His will for me and I'm putting other things before Him, it's likely He will somehow take it away. And He now has. Twice.
A few months ago God told me I would stay home this coming school year and not return to my elementary school as a part time teacher. We had recently moved away from the school and it seemed to make sense. I only dreamed of staying home again and how it would allow me all the time I needed to put into “my” business and do more of the things “I” wanted to so the business could grow. I thought I had it all figured out. Haha--nope!
The last several sessions I've had, my equipment has given me a hard time and though I was prepared with backup gear and in the end the photos were fine, I felt uneasy and continued to pray like I always do before I have a session. Two weekends ago it happened again and when I got home and in the quiet of the night, God said to let the film go, and get back to my “why”. He is a good, good Father and gentle in how He has spoken to me. Not scolding, just redirecting.
For those times I thought certain things about the business didn't matter to Him, I discovered (and should have realized sooner), they do matter. All of it. He needs to be a part of every bit of it. In control, not me. I needed to surrender my wants and desires to fall under His direction and guidance once again. It's so easy to fall out of that and think somehow our ways are better--not so. It would be then that He would and will show me how He can bless and use me fully.
So what does that mean for Alisa Greig Photography right now? Well, besides transitioning back to digital, the name has changed, He told me that would need to happen a week ago. It's His business, not mine, so naturally it made sense. I created a tag line a couple months ago for a little ad--seeing joy within and throughout: family, nature, film. I still like it and feel it mostly fits, so the new name will be Joy Within. It feels right and I'm excited to see where this goes and what it looks like. I'll be taking His lead and reworking things around here.
I can't say if this is what He'll have me doing in a year, or even in a month, but for today this is it. How it will evolve, I have no clue at this point. I pray to be obedient in following His direction for my purpose using the gifts He's given me. I am thankful for a patient Father, whose love for me never ends.
Thanks for reading. This is the most I have or ever will write at once. The End. :)