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Los Tres Vulcanos, El Salvador. Outside of San Salvador. Day 10.

So praise be to God for these past few days. It is hard to recount and motivate myself to remember day by day the acconts that make up a trip of mine. When I miss a day writing, the only time i really hurt over it is when I begin to recall the day because of a need to write about it. I am sorry I have not written about what I am doing or learning from God, because it would grow your faith. so i will begin now with just a small moment. the sound of rain fluctuating in strength cares for me as I eat.

“finished? or more?” my waiter asks as he take away my chips during my mexican style buffet served at my hotel. The rain is pourin again as it does every night at around 5 pm. today was different as the lighting hit so hard that people were talking about it. the hardest thing to do is have the locals comment about the weather. here i sit in the same seat i do every night. I am not sure what it is about my favortie seat in the resturarnat but notboddy else tryies to take it. It is by the window to the once in awhile lit by lightinging courtyard filled with fauna, clasical hispanianic guitar music and some voices here of excited spanish tuned el salvadorian familes discussing the day.

On a personal side note…I noticed today that I am getting older. Not because of anything else besides how i looked at my mission. I noticed today that I am ready to get older and become a man in Christ. To stand as a man in Christ. I am yet to see a beautiful woman who has taken my heart. It is kind of strange traveling the world over and not seeing a wonderful woman I would like to marry. That is how big God is when it comes to chosing a loved tone to live with. A whole world can be seen but the spouse to be could be as close as the your coffee in the morning at home. I don’t think about love often but when I travel i think about it more. not in any way besisdes sharing my experiences like a show and tell. Maybe because the first time I had traveled I left my only girlfriend ever to visit my first country abroad, Cambodia. Then it was Europe with her. And then the relationship stopped and God was glorified. Fast forward through Africa, Asia, Africa Asia Asia Asia Asia again, Europe and now it is Latin America. So yeah, still single, a man in Christ. sweet.

The seats will rise to meet you where you stand. That is why I step away. I have been in latin america now for 10 days and it has gone quickly. I have not eaten well…well until now. I was sitting in Honduras eating warm bread with olive oil. I am now in El Salvador and have been for 4 days. i am going through a sort of dtr with my life and photography. one the one hand i cant stand to live without it. on the other hand a huge faith step needs to be taken because of lack of motivation. It is not enough to go out boldy in dangerous environments and document, it is more to do it when you are scared. every single time i see the opportunity the desire and push follows. i, when in the situation of the moment which is photographic, do make the photograph to tell the story and in the morning when I wake up, it almost seems that I have to start all over with motivating my self. When I photograph I get in the moment at hand and I make the best of it. through the day my character builds and builds and builds. The photographs I miss becuase of one reason or another, pass me by like key on the side of a car. Yeah, its that bad. But quickly to the next photograph, I push on to.

Each morning when i wake up I think while laying as I try and blink away sleepy thoughts. another day to photograph. i close my eyes and expect the breeze to follow. and it does. even in a resort it is beautiful. in other countries i don’t need a alarm clock, i just wake up in time to start. Sometimes it is the dogs, sometimes the rooster, sometimes the music, today it was the music. ohh why do people want to move to america. this morning i woke up to music. music that the locals had started singing, one man sounded like he was in the shower, and then the woman, down the street hitting the wild fires in california with her high notes. “oh, america” the chorus went. singing about america. each blink begins a new thought, a new motivation, a few prayers and praises and and another five minute snooze. Blink open; a rooster crows to open my eyes, a dog gang fights and my eyes open again at 545am, and the break through sound to start my day was brought upon by the song to america. I was told that the reason Latin America can exist is because of illegal immigrants working in the united states and sending back money to their families in their hometowns.

I began a day a few days ago in wonder of why I am a photographer. I began it with praising God for how big he is. My mind began to wonder at that, “So big he fills this room, no this country, no this world, no this universe”, my mind expanded and expanded as I was cutting back further and further my grasp on what size means to me. And then it snapped with the thought of particulate matter. “He is this house this country the world and the universe and then trees and the people around me and me.” The comparisons halted when it dawned on me that all of that came together and decided before anyone was around to prophesy that the entire everything of everything would come together around 2000 years ago and create a life to destroy the distance between God and man. All of everything that matters came together in Jesus. Bomb shell on my conscience. At that moment I couldn’t even say the word God. It wasn’t big enough. No it wasn’t that it wasn’t big enough, it was that that word to me wasn’t free enough wasn’t expansive enough I wasn’t humble enough. I began to relate with the names in the old testiment of My Provider , the Great I Am, My Redeemer.

Bomb shell on my faith. Simultaneously two sentences came into my mind like this:

My Provider, my hope, is, lion of judah, lion, exist, peace, love, hope, there and here. same. my provider. and so on.

and..

starving people in Africa, asia, starving with faith in asia africa asia asia again. death and pain not needed. and so on.

All that I knew God to be and all that I have seen in life makes sense when they are put together in gibberish but separated one seems to vacant of foundation or purpose. Each is supported by what I can’t fathom.

A voice came to people around Jesus in the book of John and they were amazed. But Jesus said that voice wasn’t for him it was for them.

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4 comments
  1. Torsonya said:

    Stephen,
    I’m sure that I don’t just speak for myself when I say that we love your work and wait to see the images that you capture. Many of us haven’t seen even half of the wonders that you have. Enjoy it. Capture it.
    Get the lead out buddy!

    In Christ
    Sonya

  2. antonette said:

    that looks like “los quatro vulcanos” to me

  3. antonette said:

    “los quatros vulcanos” hum

  4. Beautiful picture. I wish I could describe the words I get when I look at those dark clouds, there’s something almost hypnotizing about the clouds and sunsets. Even in a photo they can convey such great emotions. It’s kind of like God…we have all these snapshots of Him through life. These moments where we capture times where He shows Himself through the kindness of another person, or an opportunity or a small miracle or blessing. And in those moments we pause and see God’s beauty in a way that truly warms our heart. But God is even bigger than those moments, than those snapshots of His grace and mercy. We could never box in His glory just as a photography could never capture the full magnificence of the sky.

    I get those moments when saying God feels so small when it comes to grasping His largeness, His grandeur, His…WOW! You explained that feeling quite nicely.

    I could go on but in short, I get what you’re saying. You made some really insightful points. Thanks for sharing!

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