Today was a good day. It was a good day for many reasons. The most recent is that I just made a very big purchase. It is something that I have wanted for a very long time and we have saved up enough money for a very long time to invest in a totally awesome Nikon DSL-R camera!!! I can't wait for it to arrive in 7-10 days, hopefully 7 (fingers crossed). I just told Phil he better get used to a photo snapping wife. He told me I better get used to taking pictures of dogs. I guess I'll just have to get sneaky. ;) Photography has been something I have always enjoyed, an art form that inspires me. It captures God's beauty in a way that allows me to slow down and enjoy a moment a little longer, to study the details like how the sun comes through leaves, or the wisps of hair that surrounds a friend's face, or the details in a flower. For so long I have admired others' work, and I am ready to step behind the camera and take a shot at it! (yes, the pun is indeed intended - how could I resist?)
This purchase was a timely coincidence to the message given this morning at church. Our pastor spoke about the ownership of this church to be every members' responsibility. Our church has a very specific vision, to be an exciting and relevant church for the unchurched people. To live this vision it takes us inviting people to our church, to spread the news of a church that would love to pour into them. The "us" that our pastor was referring to is not just the leadership of the church or the long time attenders. It includes you, and me, and all of us! Our nature is to take the path of least resistance and do what is easiest. Often that is not taking the risk to invite someone who may say no.
The path of least resistance is also not getting off the sideline and into the game God has for you. This is something that I have thought about a lot since we moved to Virginia. I have had a lot of time on my hands. I discovered that I did not really have any hobbies. My life back home was a busy one of work, school, soccer, family, and friends. There wasn't much time for a hobby. I also have a sickly amount of pride that pretty much holds me back from trying anything that I might not be good at. I know, its horrible. But that is my nature. It prevents me from singing, dancing, taking pictures, cooking for others... you get the idea. Even in the small things that don't really matter, I question whether or not I will succeed. And let me tell you, living that way is pretty dang boring. I have missed out on all God has to offer me. He has made me with certain gifts and certain limitations. But me delighting in His creation, whether I think I am good or not, brings delight to my King and that is what should matter most. Taking risks for the kingdom is the best risk to take, like inviting someone to church.
At this point you may be asking how buying a camera is taking risk. Well, my dear reader, for me it is a risk because I have always felt a passion for photography but never ventured to develop it past admiration. I believe that I will see God in a new way by looking through a lens, to focus in on His creation. I also believe that God can use photography to capture our attention to see His glory. I pray that through this endeavor I will not only yearn for God, but that others will too. And for me, being bold in sharing Christ is a scary thing. But hopefully, this weak vessel can be used to highlight God and His creation for eyes that have yet to see Him. May their eyes be opened and their hearts filled with His love and peace.