A quote from Craig Groeschel

​Most Christians are being crucified on a cross between two thieves: Yesterday’s regret and tomorrow’s worries. –Warren Wiersbe

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The cold way up

“Climbing ancient glacial ice under the stars is one thing, but to have the aurora dance over our heads at the same time was unbelievable,” photographer Paul Zizka says of this shot he took of climber Raf Andronowski and belayer Jeff Thom. The two were ice climbing under the aurora borealis on the Athabasca Glacier in Jasper National Park in Alberta, Canada. “I arranged to meet at the cave with Andronowski and Thom, but arrived quite a bit before they did,” Zizka says. “While I was there alone the sky exploded. I crossed my fingers to have the show go on until the arrival of the climbers, and more importantly, I proceeded to scout out different compositions so that we could proceed efficiently once they arrived.”

Zizka’s preparation paid off. Once his friends arrived, he told them where to go to get the best image. “I’ve worked with these skilled climbers before, so they know what they need to do and are very good at holding still,” he says. “The climbing itself was also extremely challenging. Both climbers are very experienced and commented that the severely overhanging, extremely brittle ice afforded some of the hardest climbing they had ever done.”
Reblogged from National Geographic

The wall

“The wall is insanely overhanging and one of the steepest I have ever photographed or climbed,” photographer James ‘Q’ Martin says of this image he captured of luminary artist and climber Jeremy Collins making a first ascent of Gold Blood in Venezuela’s remote Sabana Jungle. “I was 20 feet from the wall, ascending the line completely in space, spinning like a top. I would wait till I would spin in the direction of the climber and grab a couple stills before I would continue on my dizzy dance with the exposure.”

Accompanying Martin and Collins on the trip were Pat Goodman and José Miranda. The team had previously set out to climb this spot a couple years prior, but ran into trouble. “On the previous trip the group suffered major setbacks, with José taking a bad lead fall and Pat slipping in the unpredictable jungle—both falls resulted in broken bones.” Conditions weren’t ideal at the time this photo was taken, either.
“This expedition was challenging on so many levels. The country was in political unrest, the bush pilots refused to fly, the motor blew up on the vehicle we used to travel from Caracas … the list of challenges was a mile long. But in the end, all those hardships made the summit and success of the project that much sweeter.”
Reblogged from National Geographic

Getting the perfect shot 

“I swam out and positioned myself high on the west bowl to get a good perspective of the whole wave—its size and how it draws off the bottom reef,” says photographer Domenic Mosqueira of this image he shot of surfer Nathan Florence riding a wave in the early morning off legendary surf village Teahupoo, on the southwest coast of Tahiti in French Polynesia. “I didn’t want to be too tight and up close, but I wanted to make sure I got the amazing morning light as the sun spilled over the mountains.”

Mosqueira didn’t have many problems on this particular morning—beyond the typical challenges associated with surf photography. “I kept swimming to get in the right place between sets since some waves are bigger than others,” he recalls, noting that surf photographer Daniel Russo, pictured, was also battling the waves to shoot. “Once I was in position, I just hoped all the elements would come together, that the wave was big and clean, that the rider was in the barrel, and the light was good. When all these things come together, it typically makes for a good image.”

Reblogged from National Geographic

A quote from Max Lucado

​Your identity is not in possessions, talents or accomplishments. Nor are you defined by divorce, debt or dumb choices. #GRACEthebook

Getting ready

“With most action photography, I feel that I only have a couple chances to make the photo work to tell the story,” says photographer Tyler Roemer, who took this mid-winter photo of kayaker Christie G. Eastman preparing to paddle off Celestial Falls on the White River in Oregon.

“With the roaring of the water, communication between Christie, the other boaters, and me was down to nothing. To get in position, I perched on a ledge that was directly across from the falls’ line of sight. Access was easy for me, but more challenging for the kayakers,” Roemer says.
Eastman, meanwhile, was warming up in the pool above the falls and lining up her kayak with the spout of the waterfall to ensure a clean plunge. “It can be difficult to see from upstream,” she says.
Eastman was able to execute the icy maneuver, but the drop-off by another member of Roemer’s team didn’t go as planned.
That boater “misread the water slightly, which sent him into an over-rotation and an improper landing. He injured his arm, and he had to eject out of his boat to swim to the safety of the shore,” Roemer says.
Despite the small setback, Roemer calls the trip a success. “I love being witness to scenes that unfold in front of the lens like this, especially when everyone walks away with a smile on their face.”