Put On The Camera!

by | Jun 23, 2023 | Impressive Places, Perspective, Stories & Expeditions | 0 comments

On our way back from the HEAV Convention last week, Julianna and I met up with some friends to go for a hike and spend some time together! The hike we decided on was Bear’s Den Overlook on the Appalachian Trail. I hadn’t ever been there before, but it seemed like a nice family-friendly hike. Moderate incline, a mile in, a mile out.

Like most East-Coast mountain trails, it was a wooded hike all the way. On the way in, we admired the giant trees, identified poison ivy, and climbed around on big rocks. (Well, at least me and the other kids. Smile)

230613_James Staddon_5235 Canon EOS 5D Mark III, 24 mm, 1-50 sec at f - 5.6, ISO 400

230613_James Staddon_5239 Canon EOS 5D Mark III, 24 mm, 1-80 sec at f - 5.6, ISO 400

When we arrived at the overlook, we took in the gorgeous view, found the Shenandoah River off in the distance, and chatted with a through-hiker who was on her way from Georgia to Maine. (Surprised smile) Peter showed me his favorite rock tunnels, Elizabeth pulled out the snacks, and we took some group selfies!

230613_James Staddon_5242 Canon EOS 5D Mark III, 24 mm, 1-160 sec at f - 14, ISO 100

230613_James Staddon_5243 Canon EOS 5D Mark III, 24 mm, 1-100 sec at f - 2.8, ISO 100

It was a fun place for taking random pictures, too. Lots of nice rocks, textures, and vast, open sky. It wasn’t the best time of day for traditional landscape photos, the mid-afternoon light being harsh and colorless. So, though it was fun, I didn’t take that many photos.

230613_James Staddon_5247 Canon EOS 5D Mark III, 24 mm, 1-125 sec at f - 11, ISO 100

230613_James Staddon_5254 Canon EOS 5D Mark III, 30 mm, 1-100 sec at f - 11, ISO 100

And that’s why I was surprised at what Peter said as we started hiking out. He and I were a dozen paces ahead of the others. His film, point-and-shoot camera swinging from his wrist. Without breaking stride, he looked up at me and said, “Every time I see you, you always have your camera with you!”

I smiled. It was neat that that was something he would think to say. But it puzzled me because Peter and I have hardly done anything together. I’ve only see him maybe once or twice a year for the past four or five years. In fact, the most recent couple of times I had seen him, I can’t say that I actually remember having my camera with me! But for some reason, there was something that impressed him to say that. Maybe he was thinking selectively of the few times he had seen me with a camera and verbalized an over generalization. Or perhaps it’s because he knew I liked photography, and in his mind, he imagines photographers as always having their cameras with them. Or maybe he liked photography, so carries his camera everywhere he goes, and simply assumes that fellow photographers would do the same.

230613_James Staddon_5260 Canon EOS 5D Mark III, 70 mm, 1-250 sec at f - 2.8, ISO 100

I don’t really know. But I do think it’s fun how this little comment underscores a neat concept: people notice when I carry around a camera. Do you notice other people who have a camera? Like, a real one! Maybe it’s on a strap around their neck. Maybe it’s slung over a shoulder. Maybe it’s clipped to a pack, sitting on a tripod, or being held by the photographer who is taking a picture. I sure do!

When I put on the camera, people notice.

The same is true when we put on what the Bible calls “the armor of light”! A day or two after our hike, I was reading in Romans 13: “The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light.” This is something God tells me to do! Like I put on clothes, or put a camera over my shoulder, I put on His light. People have a harder time knowing I’m a photographer if I don’t have my camera with me!

Of course, having a camera doesn’t make me a photographer, but if I am a photographer, I’ll have one with me. Doing good things isn’t going to get me any closer to being a Christian, but if I am a Christian, then His light (aka good works) will emanate from my life.

If I call myself a Christian, do I look like one?

I may not remember to have my camera with me all the time. I might forget it at home when I’m not thinking! But is putting on God’s armor of light such a passion of mine that, even when I make mistakes or am going through a hard time, people can still tell that I’m a Christian?

Let the world love their darkness. Let us walk honestly (decently), as in the day; not in rioting (loose behavior) and drunkenness (anything that interrupts clear communication with the Holy Spirit), not in chambering (cohabitation) and wantonness (sexual sins, looking at pornography), not in strife (maybe fighting among siblings?) and envying (discontentment with what God has given me). Instead, “put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof!”

230613_James Staddon_5251 Canon EOS 5D Mark III, 24 mm, 1-100 sec at f - 11, ISO 100

Get each article as soon as it goes live!

Recommended Ebook


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Send the next blog post straight to your email inbox!

Thank you for subscribing!