Back in August I felt the Lord asking me to wait until January.
At first it was clear that He was asking me to wait on dating (because He tends to speak volumes to me through relationships – I’m a friggin wedding photographer, yo) but it became clear quite quickly that God was inviting me to wait on other things, too.
Things like how to move my business forward, how to make things work to hire Liz full time, how to spend my time in the first few months of 2017 because I didn’t have anything on my calendar until April, how to be part of a creative community.
In discussing the “waiting on dating” scenario with someone I trust very much, she pointed out that it sounded much less like a dating fast (for lack of a better term; I’d been fumbling my way through telling her about it in better words) and more like a trust exercise. Did I trust God knew/knows what He’s doing with this area of my life that’s so important to me?
Making that time of intentional waiting about trust made it easier on my heart. I could do something to show God I trusted Him, so I stopped looking for eligible gentlemen in the pews at church. Stopped trying to craft a relationship where there was none. Stopped chasing men who showed only a flicker of interest.
And it was AWESOME. I felt freedom. I made friends in my new community with no underlying thoughts of, “Well his last name would sound real good attached to my first name!”
(I facepalm about that line, but it’s the truth. Ladies, ya feel me?)
But really, my favourite part was that I learned more about that sacred space reserved just for Jesus & me. It’s a beautiful thing.
Living from a place of trust, paying better attention to when and why that trust faltered, helped guide waiting in all the other areas. I now know that God was using the thing most important to me (relationships) to teach me about trust in every aspect of my life:
Did I trust God with my business? Did I trust God with my dream to provide a sustainable job for Liz? Did I trust God to provide for me in every possible way?
There were days that had me feeling fully in line with the Lord’s will during the waiting, but some days were frustrating. Trying to figure out how to make things happen was hard when all I felt the Lord saying was, “Wait.”
I should have known something big was coming when God whispered January deep into my heart. Only after the events of this year’s January did I realize that month has held significant life events in the past:
January 2014 – God invited me to take a leap of faith & pursue photography full time
January 2015 – God invited me to explore Calgary as more than just another city I visited
January 2016 – God invited me to pursue starting a women’s house in Calgary
How I didn’t connect the January thing until now… I’ll never know.
– – –
In December I went back to Langley for the holidays.
I moved to Calgary last June, but I grew up in Langley. For a while before I moved I felt purposeless there, mostly after living a life where wedding photography had me travelling more than I ever thought possible. I could be based out of anywhere, I needed a change, and so I moved to Alberta.
While I was home I thought about what it’d be like to live in Langley again. I came to the conclusion that one day, if I get married and have kids, I’d like to live there. Close to my family, close to my nieces & nephews, close to the life-long friends I love. It was the first time I felt real conviction behind saying I’d like to live in Langley again one day.
The rest of December went by in a blur of being sick and celebrating Christmas and photographing Rise Up. The wait was almost over! What that meant I had no idea, but I was excited nonetheless! Stuffy nosed and coughing up a lung, but excited!
Less than a week into the new year my brother & sister-in-law had me over for dinner. We were all sick, but since I was leaving to go back to Calgary a few days later we spent time together anyway. I usually get to spend time with Jason, my brother, every few months, going for coffee, catching up, and him pushing me to move my business forward. It’s been incredible having his insight, especially seeing him go through the growth of a business with his own, Glass Canvas.
We got caught up on life, me filling Jason in on the waiting and the desire to keep Liz and the hard things that come with being the one responsible for every business decision. For months, since having coffee with him in August, he’d heard me say,
“I just want to move forward, to explore my talents and use them to their full potential. I don’t feel like I’m doing it now, and I don’t know how to even go about figuring out the next step, but I want it to involve Liz and I want creative community to help me figure it out.”
As we were sitting on the couch drinking peppermint tea after dinner, Jason sat up and said,
“What if you worked for Glass Canvas?”
Little did my brother know that for MONTHS I had tried to bring that up with him. I wanted to write for Glass Canvas, something I thought I could do on a contract around weddings. Every time I tried to start the conversation it would be steered in a different direction, so when he went on to describe a position they needed filled, I didn’t realize he was being serious.
Until he kept going.
“We could be flexible with you travelling for weddings this year.”
“Laura, I think you would be really good at this job.”
“We could even figure out a way for you to work remotely until you moved back here to work in the office.”
My sister-in-law and I laughed, especially at the moving comment, because hello bro, I’d only moved to Calgary seven months earlier. Granted I’d been away from Calgary equal to how much time I’d spent there, but still.
“Just think about it,” he said.
– – –
That night I cried in the shower, allowing the overwhelming sense that this was the end of waiting to wash over me.
To combat the fears that crept in about what taking this job could mean, the things the enemy would latch on to if I wasn’t diligent, I took the advice of a good friend and proclaimed truth to regulate that fear, falling asleep to King of My Heart.
The next morning I made a pro/con list about the offer. The pros were all answers to prayer; I’d hand over administrative tasks to Liz and thus could employ her, work with a creative team every day while living in Langley… so many things.
Everything that would come with working for Glass Canvas was an incredible reflection of how intimately my Heavenly Father knows my heart.
The cons? In short, all trust issues. Did I think God would let me down in all the things I was worried about? Or did I trust Him?
Do I trust Him?
After spending four + months actively exercising that trust muscle, let me tell you: I felt like I was being prepared to give an answer to this rather sudden but profoundly beautiful answer to so many prayers.
So I said yes.
– – –
If you’re shocked, believe me that I was shocked, too. But when I look at how God has orchestrated this whole thing I can’t help but know it’s a gift from Him.
As we figured out the details, it became apparent that the Lord was making way for me to join the Glass Canvas team. Not only was it an answer to my prayers, but it was an answer to their prayers, too.
If ever there was a job that would be the perfect fit for me, for the call the Lord has placed on my life to tell stories about generation changers, it’s this company. The similarity in language & drive behind why we do what we do is incredible. Glass Canvas has been watching my business for years, taking note of the talents I’ve been trying to cultivate, and offered me a position to further dig into those things.
All of this means I’m moving to Langley at the beginning of March.
It’s sad and exciting. Sad to leave the house full of women I love so much, but exciting to step into another big YES to the plan God has for my life.
I’m careful to make sure I don’t say “moving BACK” because honestly, it’s not going back at all. It’s moving forward into what God is inviting me into. I’m following the Lord – that just happens to mean going to Langley.
Having paid attention to how God speaks to me, knowing how He uses dramatic things to make a point to this sometimes-dense heart of mine, I know this decision is good. I know it involves sacrifice – most notably leaving The Hollow – but He has shown me time and time again that when it comes to following His will, that sacrifice will be worth it.
The ache of leaving has already made itself known but having the support of so many people, especially the women I have the honour of living with, is helping me transition well. Your prayers are appreciated as I prepare to move again & deal with all that comes with this change!
What a life. God is good.