Looking At The Big Picture
How large is your world? Do you take notice of only those things immediately around you? Or do you look outward into the greater world beyond your home and neighborhood and notice that things are different from where you are at the moment? It is easy to have a small view, and sometimes it is more comfortable, too. But there are some great life lessons in looking beyond. This picture I think illustrates this perfectly. The sun is shining where the picture was captured. However, in the distance are two rainstorms. There is a small patch of blue in the sky surrounded by clouds. We know from experience that what we see in this big picture will be different in a few minutes. The storms will continue to move on or even totally dissipate. Where it is currently sunny, may shortly become cloudy and rainy. One of my dreams is to try my hand at astrophotography and to be able to capture a great picture of the Milky Way. In preparation for this I have lately been studying how to take night shots. There are specific camera settings that you have to use when photographing the sky at night. Two of them are especially important, setting the length of time for the exposure, and the lens focus setting. These are especially important when wanting to shoot star trails. We want our stars to be as sharp as possible, so we set our lenses so that they will focus sharply all the way to infinity. And we set the length of time for the exposure to give the impression of the stars moving. But the stars don't actually move. They are fixed in the sky. WE are the ones that are moving. What this says about life is that things are always in transition even when we sometimes get the feeling that we are stuck in the same place. And that sometimes the best way to recognize this is to put everything in focus and look at the bigger picture. When you do, you can't help but see that this minutes' storms will eventually be replaced by sunshine. Covid-19 has altered life for all of us in many ways. But if we look at the big picture, some of these ways can be gifts that, once this pandemic is passed, can help us move forward with more confidence in the days ahead.