But God. Redemption. And Black and White Photography.
While we were in Tampa for the Bar Exam I was able to visit with my dad's mom. Her name is Norma, and she is living with Alzheimer's.
I have never been real close with my Dad's side of the family for various reasons. And even though years have passed and I'm an adult, I still long for those relationships that could have been. I don't want this post to be all "poor Danielle". I want to dwell on the redemption God can bring to any situation. Just when things seem most dim, God acts. The phrase "But God" comes to mind.
I was in college when my grandmother was diagnosed with Alzheimer's. I was actively involved in my church's college ministry. I was leading a bible study at my house and was even speaking occasionally at Fusion, our church's weekly college gathering. Teaching was quickly becoming my spiritual gift, and guess what? It was my grandmother's spiritual gift as well. We didn't really talk much before my college years, but God worked in the short time we had before the Alzheimer's became more prominent. We were able to bond over our common gift. Leave it to God to redeem that situation. Even though that time was short, I will always treasure it. Whenever I lead a study or speak, I will always think of her.
"But God" appears all over scripture. Look no further than Genesis 8:1. "But God remembered Noah and all the wild animals and livestock that were with him in the ark, and he sent a wind over the Earth, and the waters receded." The Earth has just been flooded. Destroyed. Gone. No land anywhere. Noah and his family are the only people left alive in the world. In fact, the verse right before Genesis 8:1 says, "The waters flooded the Earth for 150 days." - Genesis 7:24.
Can you imagine being Noah? Alone in the ark with his family and a bunch of animals. "Um, hey God, so about all this water...what's the plan?" The situation seemed bleak, and God acted. But God. Here are a couple of my favorite "But God" verses.
"My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever." - Psalm 73:26
Let's turn the tables. Is there a situation in your life that seems so beyond God's redemption? I promise you it's not. Our God is able. The bible in its entirety is a story of redemption. It's about a God who so loved his children that no matter how disobedient, or how far they wandered, he sent His son to die for them. For their ultimate redemption. Trust Him with your situation.
Sorry about the heaviness of this post. It is just something that has been on my heart. Now on to the photos! I am beginning to try my hand at black and white photography. I love the feel it adds to a photo. I'm not saying I'm any good at it, but I am learning how to utilize this skill. The first thing I learned is that there needs to be a lot of contrast to make a black and white photo stand out. You don't have color to work with so the blacker your blacks and the whiter your whites, the more contrast you have. I'm thinking a post on how to take b&w photos is in the works! Until then, enjoy these.
My Dad went to tell the caregiver my grandmother needed help going to the bathroom and she waved to him as he left the room. I'm glad I was able to capture this moment.
This just might be my favorite photo of the bunch. My Dad gives his mom kisses and in return she gives him "butterfly kisses." It's such a tender moment between them.
I so greatly admire my Dad for going to see his mom so often. It is not easy to transition roles from having your parent take care of you, to you taking care of them. My parents are such great examples of servitude. I know that when the time comes I will without hesitation do the same things for them that they are doing for their parents.