Last Thursday morning, I had a glimpse of heaven through my viewfinder. Every branch on every limb on every tree was dusted with a fresh coat of snow. It was a stunning moment that took my breath away. Of course, I reached for my camera in the hope of capturing this scene, but you had to be present to really experience the sacredness and grace of this moment.
I am in the process of learning how to use a pro model camera. The number of options and details in using this technology is overwhelming. But one of my photo mentors kindly reminded me that “its not about the new technology, its about your technique.”
What is my technique? Drive along a country road, notice out of the corner of my eye a shot that looks interesting. Stop the car, set up the tripod, or more likely, stand, squat and take the shoot. Pretty lame technique if you ask me. Rather, this young professional photographer was trying to wake me up to realize that any stunning shot is more about your technique in life and not about how many the pixels you have in your camera.
He demonstrated how he simply looks through the viewfinder and lets the camera select the best aperature and shutter options and focuses in on his subject. He pays attention to his subject, not the technology. Once he gets his focus, his moves a dial around to make it “tact sharp” and viola he has his shot. Technique!
Sounds pretty easy, but it took years for him to develop his unique technique.
Lets imagine Jesus’ technique for being fully human. Yes, he was without sin, but being human meant he experienced all the joys, sorrows and disappointments of this life. His technique was not to whine about the technology. Rather, he spent time getting to know his people. Making himself present to their everyday moments. Our Lord’s technique was not to be a stranger. He was not a distant God, somewhere hiding in the clouds, but rooted on earth and walking into the homes of folks and letting people know that God has chosen each of us for a special mission. His technique was all about affirmation, graced with the knowledge that sometimes we have our imperfections that simply need refining. His technique, his message was “be watchful how we come across to one another, be humble not selfish, be kind not mean, generous to a fault to everyone.
Spiritual technique puts us right in the viewfinder of God who always has his eye on our efforts to bring light to the world and when we are in focus, we get the most profound, the most stunning images possible. We are beaming with the radiance of God in our hearts. It is a transforming moment when our point and shoot shots become museum quality art. Believe me, all of you are a fine work of art in the viewfinder of God!
Take a moment to reflect on this magnificent image that I had the privilege to witness a week ago. When I woke up, it lay before my eyes, a glimpse of heaven. All I had to do was bask in the moment and thank God for his wonderful creation. I am grateful we have had a mild winter so far, but this moment makes me think about technique.
Immanuel prays for us as we reflect; “Send me your light and your faithful care, let them lead me; let them bring me to your holy mountain, to the place where you dwell. (Psalm 43: 3).
Lord, I pray for all my Sonshine Friends that in this Lenten journey our unique technique may place us in your holy presence.