Monday, December 12, 2011

The Power of a Picture

With our anniversary sneaking up in January, I was thinking about the many pictures from our wedding that we still have not developed. Although the images from our wedding are stored on the computer to view anytime, I really want them neatly assembled into a traditional album. I told my husband yesterday that for my anniversary present this year I want ALL of our wedding pictures processed.

Later on that day, we were running an errand at CVS. Adam scanned his CVS card at the front, and a coupon printed out. He laughed out loud and said, "Look, Sweetheart!" It was a $2 off photo processing coupon. I glimpsed at it and was like, "Oh neat!" Realizing I had not fully absorbed what he was saying, he continued, "look at the date." The coupon's expiration date was January 10...our anniversary. I was so touched by how God speaks to us in even the smallest details to answer the desire of our hearts.

I began to reflect on the emotional response that is triggered in a human when viewing a picture. I love this quote by Aaron Siskind, "Photography is a way of feeling, of touching, of loving. What you have caught on film is captured remembers little things long after you have forgotten everything." A picture is not just interpreted with the eyes, but also the mind and the heart. I remember when my dad passed away last year, his pictures were displayed at his funeral. I did not want to look at them because I was not ready for the emotions that would inevitably be induced. It was just too painful in that moment.

Today I felt God show me that He wanted to use wedding pictures for healing and restoration in marriages. My spirit remembered the verse, Philippians 4:8, "Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy--meditate on these things." Most weddings have close to a thousand pictures taken during just a few short hours. The pictures are not meaningful because of the ephemerality of the moment, but because of the eternal value that is folded into that moment.

The enemy has used pornography for years as a trap too divide marriages. Satan knows that a picture can be a portal into thoughts and emotions. I thought about how powerful pictures are used to attack commitment. Then, I was reminded of the flip side, how God wants to use pictures as an instrument in which His regenerative power could flow without restraint. He will use it as a gateway to the heart to rekindle love and joy and to strengthen the cord of your commitment. If you do not feel the sweet fountain of feelings that spring from first love, ask God to open your heart as you open your photo album. Even if you feel nothing, have faith that the God of the universe, Who has the power to create all things can create a new beginning for you and your spouse. How incredible is it that God can use the stillness of a photograph to stir love back to life? I guess a photo's light never really stops reflecting.


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