Friday, November 7, 2014

DEVOTION: Changing Focus ~ by Shirley Corder

God spoke: "Earth, generate life! Every sort and kind: cattle and reptiles and wild animals--all kinds." And there it was: wild animals of every kind, Cattle of all kinds, every sort of reptile and bug. God saw that it was good.

God spoke: "Let us make human beings in our image, make them reflecting our nature, so they can be responsible for the fish in the sea, the birds in the air, the cattle, And, yes, Earth itself, and every animal that moves on the face of Earth."

God created human beings; he created them godlike, Reflecting God's nature. He created them male and female. . . . And there it was. God looked over everything he had made; it was so good, so very good! It was evening, it was morning-- Day Six. (Excerpts from Genesis1:24-32 The Message)

At the second meeting of a newly formed camera club, the lecturer taught us some techniques concerning our choice of subjects. He projected various photographs onto the wall, and explained what made them great pictures, or where their weaknesses lay. Each time, he emphasized the need for a focal point. There was no such thing as just a beautiful view. There was always a main focus, perhaps a beautiful rose, a sunset, or a ship.

He showed us a picture of a beautiful garden. Flowering shrubs and shaped hedges surrounded manicured lawns. Overhead, the sky was an azure blue with wisps of soft white cloud—a stunning photograph. High up in the sky, an eagle hovered. 

"Where is the focus of this picture?" he asked us. Obviously, the photographer had intended to take a photo of the beautiful gardens. It is likely that he spotted the eagle and planned to include him in the picture.

"Notice something interesting," the speaker continued. "See how your eyes are drawn to the eagle. You look at the gardens. Then you glance back at the bird." He explained how any animal or bird in a picture always dominates the picture, no matter how small it may be.

"Now look at this," he said. He put up a photograph showing two majestic mountains, one on the right and the other on the left. High in the brilliant blue African sky an eagle or vulture hovered, too small to identify. But the bird wasn't the focus. Where the mountains came together to form a V, a young woman stood, arms stretched upwards. She was small, but immediately we all reacted. "The woman is the focus." 

The lecturer smiled, then explained that where life, as in animals or birds, dominate a photograph, when a human being appears, he or she is always the main focus of the picture.

Don't you find that fascinating? When God created the world, He created a magnificent backdrop of mountains, seas, deserts, waterfalls, sandy beaches, mighty rivers and dramatic jungles. And He said "They're good!" Then He created us—men and women—and He said, "They're very good!" Suddenly mankind was the focus of God's entire picture of creation.

I challenge you to ask yourself the question. "What is the true focus of my life?" In other words, "What do I want people's eyes to be drawn to in my life?"

Will it be good? Or will it be very good? Remember, God's focus is the people that He created. 

God is not looking at how clever you are. He's not counting how many books you've had published, or how much time you spend working for Him. He's looking at you—the pride and joy of His creation. 

Prayer: Lord God, it astounds me that with all the beauty and magnificence of your creation, your real focus is on me. Help me to bring honour to your Name, that when people look at me they say, "God is good—He's very good."


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 SHIRLEY CORDER lives on the coast in South Africa with her husband, Rob. Her book, Strength Renewed: Meditations for your Journey through Breast Cancer contains 90 meditations based on her time in the cancer valley.

Please visit her at ShirleyCorder.com, where she encourages writers, or at  RiseAndSoar.com, where she encourages those in the cancer valley. You can also meet with her on Twitter or FaceBook

11 comments:

  1. Nice to be reminded as to where is our focus when we look at life. Thanks Shirley.

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    1. I found it fascinating that it's recognised in photography as well, Ray!

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  2. I like it Shirley. For me, this is a timely reminder that tomorrow, as I have an "observation" by the principal, my focus needs to be solely on the children I'm teaching. Thank you.

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    1. I like that, Karen. So often we focus on the wrong "objects" don't we?

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  3. Very interesting. Thanks Shirley.

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  4. Fascinating. In the end it's all about people, isn't it? We can't take anything else to Heaven with us.

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    1. Yes Val, so true. Thanks for the comment.

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  5. Love the connection to photography. It's a great way to visualize what really is important. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. You're right, Lisa. I think it helps when choosing your subject for your photograph too.

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  6. What a lovely reminder that, though I seek accomplishments while I raise my children, it is the children that count so much more! A perfect confirmation of what I have been pondering over all week! Thank you Shirley.

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