I delete a lot of photos. Because the camera lies.

I have deleted photos of people with eyes half closed, limbs twisted in odd configurations and facial expressions from disgust to lust, none of which reflect the personality of the subject. They were snapshots of moments in time, captured moments on the way to more meaningful moments.

I kept this photo in my collection because I find it visually interesting. Some photos are like poems and condense an expression of an entire day into a moment. Some photos suggest cause for judgment where there is no actual cause. It is a snapshot. That is all.

Yesterday I realized how easy it is to make a snap judgment based on one moment. Social media can set these snap judgments in concrete. Mob justice is a terrifying thing. Mobs don’t have the time to make an effort to see the larger context. They grab only what they want to project onto the snapshot from their own hearts. Angry, unloving people accusing others of being insensitive, power-seekers labelling others as the source of avarice, perpetual victims waving the flag of someone they presume to be an oppressed innocent, worshippers of personal peace and prosperity attacking those who would seem to be in competition for the avails of a life of careless ease…

Only God sees the heart. Only God understands the context of an entire life — and not just a person’s past, but their future as well. Judgment based on a snapshot without the wisdom and insight given by the Holy Spirit is highly inaccurate. It is easy to imprison people, especially public figures, in the restraints of one moment in time. (Can I admit a profound distrust in media lately?)

I am learning when I pray for someone to ask the Lord how he sees them first. It is invariably a better picture than my own.

This is a photo I snapped one day. I don’t know the people. I don’t even remember the context. I do not attach any agenda meaning to it. It’s a fraction of a second in time. There is more to these people’s lives than this.

5 thoughts on “Snap

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