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3 years, 4 months ago 2

 

This morning I had a conversation with a very well respected, killer shooter, for a major golf magazine.  In his profession he is a star, but you would never know it, he never projects it!   It’s a conversation I’ve had before, actually many times before.  Why do some people allow their heads to get blown our of proportion?!  This morning the subject was a pro golfer, on other occasions the conversation has been about a photographer, a celebrity, or even doctors, lawyers and Indian chiefs!  The point of the verbal exercise is to obsess about why some people come to the conclusion that they are far better than everyone around them?  I can imagine that if you are a pro athlete, actor, or singer, and you get tons of attention, actually have fans that worship you, you can soon come to accept that as your reality!  Then again, how could you come to that conclusion??!!  Let’s assume that everyone started the same way, just another baby, not to your parents, of course, but certainly to the world. You were a child, like all children, you grew up an started to become the person you are today, somewhere along the way something changed, you were seen “differently by others”!  But does that mean you are different, or that people perceive you as different.  I know it is said that perception is reality, but is it?

 

My contention is that it is not, in all cases.  Because some people treat you as special or better than others does not actually mean you are better than others!  I once interviewed Roger Staubach, quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys, he was a big star in football at that time, but he didn’t act like he was.  He was very approachable, sincere, attentive, and treated his fans with respect and as equals. Why, because he knew the “big” secret!  We are all, more or less, the same.  We are equals.  Yes some of us make more money, and some of us are more recognized in public, but we are all impacted by the same things.  You can be famous and have a marriage break up, you can be famous and be in a accident, or get a fatal disease.  When the doctor says you have cancer, it won’t matter how famous you are, you will still face the same battle as anyone else.  You can be wealthy and loose it all.  You can be famous and respected, and become disrespected and much less famous.  So where am I going with all this??

 

Life is not about what you have, who you are, or what others think of you.  Life is about how much you love, and are loved, and who you love and trust.  If you trust the world, money, power, and the acceptance of others it can all be taken from you.  If you trust God, it can never be taken from you! Not a novel concept, but well worth repeating!

 

The world says we should desire all the things that are fragile and can disappear in and instant, how wise it to follow the instruction of the world?  God says, I love you, I will never forsake you, and I will meet your needs, and if you follow me, will give you even the desires of your heart. You tell me which is the better deal?!!   God gives peace which is not dependent on the world, the world gives happiness which is completely at the whim of the world, and your circumstances!  Which do you want?!

 

John 14:27

New Living Translation (NLT)

27 “I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.”

 

What I love about this profession is that over the last few days I’ve visited with a half dozen of the best sports photographers in the world.  You’ve seen their images grace the covers of every major sports magazine, many times.  Every single one of them are as nice, and down to earth as you could ever imagine.  Given the choice, and I do have a choice, these are the kinds of people I want to be around!

 

the pilgrim

 

Photo Note: D7000, 24-120 AFS-VR, F11 @0.6 shutter speed,  85mm focal length, ISO 400   processed with Nik Color Efex 3.0 – Glamour Glow software filter.

3 years, 4 months ago 5

 

 

 

 

When I was a young man, my father and mother drilled courtesy into me.  If I ever failed to show appreciation for a kind act, failed to say thank you, I was in big trouble!!!!  Coming onto the Masters this morning I stopped a couple of times top let a car cross our lane of traffic, because traffic is horrendous around Augusta National this week!!  One man, (a man maybe my age), threw his hand up,  acknowledging his appreciation, that after a long wait, someone considered him!  The other driver, (a very young man),  shot across the lane as if he thought I might change my mind, and never acknowledged anything.  I mentioned to Brien that if I had done that a spanking would have been on the way.  I know that there are young people that are polite, but I think the kind of training I was subjected to is much less common today.  So what’s the big deal?!   Actually, as a believer, I think it’s avery big deal.  While the action of a thank you or a please are important, it’s more about the attitude.

 

Why did I pause and let the other drivers pull through my lane?  My father has been in Heaven for a long time, so I know he wasn’t watching, or at least I certainly hope he has better things to do there!   No, I think it has to do with your approach to life.   Do other people matter?  Is life all about you?  Do you really care about any of the other thousands of people that you will interact with over your lifetime?  Would Jesus take a moment in traffic to let someone through?  Would Jesus look someone in the eye and say “Good morning”?  Would Jesus say, “thank you” when someone handed him a cup of water?  The scripture doesn’t say a lot about this kind of dialog, but it does tell us about his talking to the woman at the well, and stopping to touch and heal the sick, the lame, and the blind.  If Jesus touched the lepers, who no one touched, he smiled and greeted people warmly!

 

If you desire to witness to others about your faith, you have to start by doing something that people are not expecting, kindness, consideration, warmth. At the Masters the countless hundreds of security people, cart drivers, and door greeters, meet you with warm words and kind wishes, it reminds me of how i think things should be everywhere.  How much does it cost to be courteous?  The more important question, if you are a disciple of Jesus Christ, how much does it cost your witness to not show that concern?

 

Have a wonderful day!

 

the pilgrim

 

Yes I’m at the Masters, and speaking of nice guys!

 

Photo Note:  Nikon D800, 70-200 AFS-VR f 28 lens at f 2.8 @ 1/125th of a second.  ISO 1600.  Hand Held.

 

After I wrote this mornings blog, I got the email below, it is a testament to how a little kindness, can affect someone else’s life!

 

I had participated in the photo contest at Sun N Fun last weekend. I wanted to write you and thank you again for your kind comments regarding my photography. I have met a number of “professionals” shooting photos at air shows in the past year or two that I have been pursuing photography semi-professionally. From the people I have met, I have encountered some really great folks, and a couple of others who really look down on me as just another kid with a camera. I even had a fellow tell me once “Your photos probably aren’t good enough for a magazine.” Since then I’ve somewhat taken it upon myself to prove him wrong, but it does make me more grateful for people like yourself who would seek to offer positive and constructive comments. I have been shooting photos for a large portion of my life, and have my roots in plastic 110mm film cameras. I just got my first DSLR a couple of years ago (D90) and I am still using it even though I did take a short detour with an Olympus om2 and a dark room, so I guess you could say that I would be one of the “purists” who still embraces 35mm negatives and dark room chemicals. I feel like I am actually pretty well rounded for just being another kid with a camera.
On my way out of the door following the presentation of awards after the photo contest you had mentioned to stay in touch, and I take that comment with a great sense of honor coming from someone of your merit. I would look forward to the day where our paths might cross again. Thank you again.

3 years, 4 months ago 6

As we approach Easter, this morning’s devotional from In Touch is all the  more meaningful…..

Colossians 2:13-15

New Living Translation (NLT)

13 You were dead because of your sins and because your sinful nature was not yet cut away. Then God made you alive with Christ, for he forgave all our sins. 14 He canceled the record of the charges against us and took it away by nailing it to the cross. 15 In this way, he disarmed the spiritual rulers and authorities. He shamed them publicly by his victory over them on the cross.

 

What does the cross mean to you? Many people in the world today view it as a symbol of Christianity, but stop and think about what it represented in Christ’s day. Nobody wore a miniature cross around the neck or displayed one in a place of worship. The cross was a torturous means of execution, and the mere thought of it was repulsive.

 

Yet believers throughout the ages have chosen this as the sign of their faith. In fact, to remove the cross from our teaching and theology would leave nothing but an empty, powerless religion. The subjects of death, blood, and sacrifice have become unpopular in many churches because they’re unpleasant and uncomfortable topics. We’d prefer to hear about the love of God, not the suffering of Jesus.

 

But let me ask you this: How could anyone be saved if Christ had not been crucified? Some people think all you have to do to receive God’s forgiveness is ask Him for it. But a sinner’s request can never be the basis for His forgiveness. He would cease to be holy and just if no penalty was imposed for sin. According to Scripture, there can be no forgiveness without the shedding of blood (Heb. 9:22). Christ had to bear the punishment for our sin in order for God to grant us forgiveness.

 

Every time you see a cross, remember what it really was–an instrument of execution. Then thank Jesus that He was willing to be crucified so the Father could forgive you of sin. Though the scene of your redemption was horrendous, Christ turned the cross into a place of great triumph.

 

I wear a cross not to tell the world who I am, but to remind myself, Who I serve.

 

the pilgrim

3 years, 5 months ago 2

 

So now that all the new Nikon cameras are released and being shot, which is the one to buy?  Hold your horses, good question, but poorly asked!  Let’s ask this question first;   What do you use a camera for?

 

Let me draw some broad categories of shooters;

 

The Full Time Sports/Photojournalism Pro:  You shoot all day, everyday, under all kinds of weather, dust, and grime.  You charge your batteries every night, and the camera barely cools down in time to start shooting again.  You need a very high frame rate, and often shoot in miserable light, but still have to get the shot.  You are rough on your gear so it has to hold up to abuse!  D4, D3s, or D3, maybe in a pinch, the D700 are your cameras.  If you have to do video, the D4 and D3s are your only choices, (the other two have no video).  The D4 is the consummate, sports camera, plenty of resolution, but gobs of speed.  If your job is tough, this camera is even tougher.

 

 

The Landscape/Nature/Wildlife/Travel/ Studio/ Wedding/ Portrait/Fine Art Photographer:  If you shoot anything that requires lots and lots of detail and the ability to make enormous prints (think feet instead of inches)!  The new D800 is the answer to your prayers.  If you simply don’t need that kind of resolution, the D700 or D7000 will serve you well.  There is one problem, once you’ve shot the D800, it will be very, very hard to go back!  The detail is addicting!!  The D800 is made to be used hard, maybe not quite up to the D4 standard, but plenty tough!  It’s lighter and smaller and easier to carry than a D3s or D4.  The D7000, even more so.  If you shoot sports the speed and buffer on the D7000 will eventually disappoint you.  The D800 is only marginally better in that it has a big buffer, but 4 fps is not a sports camera.

 

 

What am I going to buy?  Good question.  If I had to decide today, I think it would be the D800 and the D7000, I might would get a D4 if the budget permitted, but I am now addicted to 36 megapixels and I love the D7000 when weight is an issue and to stretch my lenses.  More new cameras will come in the future and we will have to see what they are, and how they perform.  One thing is for sure, the D7000 will make almost any image I ever need to make, but oh my goodness how sweet it is to look at those big, super rich files coming out of the D800.  I don’t think I can ever go back now!!

 

Life is Good!

 

The pilgrim