the brighten blog » the photo blog of brighten photography

Masthead header

Category Archives: the world is a beautiful place

We welcome with more gratitude than our hearts can hold–Findley Spencer Harms.  She was born on 3/3/11 at  7:11pm. 5lbs 14oz. 19 in.

She entered the world with more bravery than we have ever witnessed. Indeed, she is our little fair warrior. Due to her rough entry and dangerous first few moments of life, she is spending the coming days in the NICU, as she fends off any potential infections and continues to recover her strength.

She is beyond beautiful. We are so thankful. Without a doubt, we have tasted God’s faithfulness.

We would be so thankful for your prayers in the coming days for our little Findley.

Much love,

View full post »

5 years ago on this day… (well it was a Saturday, but you get my drift) we two little young tikes promised forever.

And if the last five years have been only the beginning of forever….

Then that my friends, is quite possibly the greatest decision anyone could ever make.

Here’s to the girl who stole my heart at 16 and who keeps stealing it every day…

View full post »

And I’ve been wearing it proudly all day. Despite the fact that I’ve been sitting, completely alone, in front of my computer. No one has seen it but my lovely wife and a few Starbucks patrons early this morning.

But I feel damn proud to be wearing it. We are a blessed country. And all day I’ve been wanting to post something about today’s election. Because quite frankly, this is the first time that I can remember in my life that I have truly cared, and I mean… passionately cared about the privilege that it is to be a part of a country that values my voice in the way that it does.

I couldn’t sleep last night (not that I can on most nights). Tossing. Turning. Deeply wanting my convictions to be right, yet fearful of how I may be letting fear play a role in how I was deciding. But it was a beautiful morning as Whitney and I got up early to stride proudly into the confines of our personal voting space, where two grey plastic walls graciously held the future of our country.

In hoping to share something brilliant with the small readership of this here blog, I ran across a few words from a professor of mine from grad school. His name is Ron Carucci and he is a brilliant man. A man that has changed my life in ways I only am beginning to understand.

Last night he graced the world with these words about the election, words that have been a powerful reminder for myself as to the true heart that I hope to exude in this world:

“We are on the eve of one of the most extraordinary moments in our nation’s history. Have we heard that so many times in the last six months that now it’s merely cliche? 24 hours from now we will know who our next President is. Regardless of who wins, there will be a sense of profound victory for many, and profound disappointment for others. Most would say we are weary of the way political campaigns are waged – the hyperbolic ranting, character assaults, fear-inducing claims and accusations, and on and on.

So tomorrow, have you thought about who you will be when the candidate you vote for either wins or loses? What will you truly be celebrating or lamenting in that moment? I think most of us are far more clear what we are voting against more than what we are voting for. Tomorrow, when all of the electoral votes are counted, and the winner declared, what will you truly be for?

I hope I can look in the eyes of friends who voted for candidates different than those I vote for and invite them to hope for more as a state and/or a nation. They will expect me to gloat should the candidate I vote for win. Or at least show my “pity” for their loss while privately basking in the afterglow of being on the “right” side. And if my candidate loses, i will surely struggle against not resenting their victory.

The truth is, tomorrow we all win because of the freedom we enjoy to participate in the selection of our nation’s leader – a privilege for which too many of us have become overly cynical and non-participative. I do hope we can move quickly past vilifying the candidate we aren’t voting for, and realize that both of these men have talent, both bring good minds and ideas, both are deeply passionate about their country and both are highly imperfect and flawed. One of them will have the ridiculous and insane job of leading our nation through the next chapter of our story.

As a nation of 232 years young, we are still in formation. Compared to most civilizations and societies around the world, there is far more we don’t know than we do know about being one nation, under god, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. Let’s hope together that this new leader can help us learn together just a little more about what that part of the pledge we said every day of our childhoods actually means. And perhaps we can start tomorrow with how we approach those on the other side of whatever aisles we find ourselves on.”

Well said friend, well said.

May today we be reminded how beautiful of an opportunity it is to have a voice. One that is heard. And how truly beautiful it is that we live in a country where difference has the chance to be present. For it is in the midst of difference that grace, love, and beauty truly have a chance to live.

Here’s to voting. For whoever it may be that you voted for.

View full post »