What can photography teach me about following Christ?

I love photography. It helps me to see things better. Photos do more than capture a still shot of an event in life. Often times they can convey more meaning than the actual event.

Part of what makes photography exciting for me is trying to capture the essence of the moment. One of the hardest parts, especially with action shots or people in poor lighting, is keeping everything in focus. Things tend to go blurry at the worst possible moment, ruining the photo.

People ask the question, “Does life imitate art?” The better question for me is, “What can art teach us about life?” In the case of photography, I think there is at least one important to learn.

Photo from Sxc.hu by Ali AlMuallem

Focusing can be a tricky issue. In manual mode, it can be a continual process of twisting and turning trying to find the point where everything becomes clear. On newer cameras, you can select auto-focus. This often helps, but it can grab something in the background and completely blur the person or object you wanted to focus on.

When I’m trying to focus my life, I often find myself constantly adjusting and tweaking to get things just right. It is an entirely tiring and overwhelming process. Often times, I fall back to auto-focus, which can be troubling as well depending on what I allow to do the focusing. If I have allowed other things besides my relationship with Christ to be a driving force in my life, it can lead to things in the background being brought in focus. This also causes the One in the foreground to become blurry.

Photography is about focus. Life is about focus. In The Message, Eugene Peterson interprets Galatians 3:1 this way:

Have you taken leave of your senses? Something crazy has happened, for it’s obvious that you no longer have the crucified Jesus in clear focus in your lives. His sacrifice on the cross was certainly set before you clearly enough.

When I start to let other things in my life, even if they are good things, crowd out spiritual disciplines it creates problems. Christ becomes blurry. Unimportant things take center stage. Being focused on the right things matter, in photography and my spiritual life.

Comments are closed.

About Author

Aaron Earls

Christian. Husband. Daddy. Writer. Online editor for Facts & Trends Magazine. Fan of quick wits, magical wardrobes, brave hobbits, time traveling police boxes & Blue Devils.