I am an aspiring photographer. To be perfectly honest, I should admit upfront that calling myself a photographer is to be a bit generous with the term. What I actually mean is that I own a camera. The truth of the matter is my wife and children should be truly thankful that I never tried to make a living on my photography skills. Be that as it may, every now and then I get the idea that I want to be a photographer. I go to the cabinet and take the camera out of the case in which it is stored. If need be, I charge up the battery and then launch out on some expedition which will render such amazing photographs that any wildlife magazine in the country would be envious. Of course, I’m still waiting for that to occur.
A few days ago, while speaking with our oldest son on the phone who is a photographer/videographer, he pointed out that this week would be a great week in which to film the Milky Way. He gave very clear directions as to how to set up my camera, where in the sky to point it and how to snap the picture. It seemed simple enough.
Last night was the first night in which the sky was actually clear enough to view the stars. I took my camera and made the adjustments as I had been instructed. Carefully I set it up on my tripod about the time the sun was going down. One by one the stars began to appear. It was a beautiful night sky. I was excited in my anticipation of the award winning photo I was about to take. With great patience I awaited the ideal time to take the picture. I knew my window of opportunity was going to be brief as I could see clouds in the distance beginning to gather. The time finally arrived so I snapped the picture. To my great dismay, nothing happened. There was no picture. I tried again to no avail. Double checking my settings and going back through my mental checklist that I had received from my son, I tried again only to discover the same result. As the clouds finally engulfed the Milky Way I saw my great opportunity slip away.
It was a disappointment. Something must have happened to my camera while it was packed away. After all, we had moved several times in the last couple of years. Perhaps I could find someone who could fix it.
Upon arriving back at home, I went to the case in which to place my camera and I made a discovery. The lens cap was still on the camera. I had made all of the preparations but one of the most important things I had overlooked.
Have you ever been there? I don’t necessarily mean in your use of your camera but in your approach to life and faith. Have you ever headed out into a new day with the intent of accomplishing a particular purpose, only to discover that something is in the way.
Let me ask you a question. What is it that is in the way? What is keeping you from achieving your best? Could it be as simple as removing the lens cap so you can see where you are focused? What are you going to do about it?
One of my favorite stories from the Bible is in Matthew. The disciples are out in the Sea of Galilee and their boat is being toss about by a ferocious storm. Jesus approaches them walking on the water. Peter, upon seeing Jesus says, “If it is you let me come walking to you.” Jesus invites him to do so and no sooner does he get started when he takes his eyes off of Jesus and Peter begins to sink. That’s usually what happens to most of us when we take our eyes off of Jesus. So, let me ask again; What is in your way? What steps do you need to take to move whatever it is so your focus can be restored? Just as it was with that beautiful sky last night, I’m sure God has something beautiful for you once you get the obstacles out of the way.