By: Chaunte McClure
With the convenience of having cameras built into cell phones, the world has become obsessed with taking photos. We take pictures of our food, plants, bare feet, shoes and my, oh my do we take photos of ourselves. Yes, the selfie has taken over social media timelines and feeds, but the ‘usie’ isn’t far behind. Of course, we have to snap a photo of our family and friends when we’re just hanging out; it’s all in fun and in the name of capturing memories.
I was warming up my pose and smile for a group photo recently when I was asked, “Chaunte, why are you in the picture?” For a couple of seconds, I second-guessed my position in front of the camera, knowing that I was invited to say cheese along with my friend and her friends.
Fast forward a few days, I thought about the question again during my commute to work. Why are you in the picture?
It’s a relevant question that we can ask ourselves regarding (the proverbial picture of) our conversations, settings, relationships, careers and other facets of life.
I’m sure you’ve asked yourself the question before but perhaps formed it differently. Instead, you’ve asked:
What is my purpose? Why did God call me to do this? Why do I have this job when my career goals are totally different? Why did I meet him or her? Why am I going through this? Why was I born? What am I to learn from this situation?
Each of these questions, I believe, is another way of asking: Why am I in the picture?
Truth is, we should exclude ourselves from some “pictures”, but we tend to try to fit in someone else’s shot, even if it means photobombing.
When you find yourself in toxic relationships, the honest, well-thought-out answer to the above question, should urge you to walk away from that which is not good for you.
On the other hand, a reflection of your journey as you recall a time when you’ve asked yourself some form of that question, your response may help you appreciate where you are in life right now and have a better understanding of how God has ordered your steps. That’s my story because now I can see how my past two jobs prepared me for my current job.
At times, we are in the picture for a divine purpose – to provide encouragement, bring peace, make connections, share love, take a stand, be a witness, and the list can go on and on.
Other times, we are in the picture for our selfish reasons. We force ourselves to stay in the picture although God is ready to crop us out and place us in a different setting with our past in the background. Are you ready to change places?
Take some time to think about why you’re in the picture. You might discover that you should be where you are, but you’re not fulfilling your purpose. You might realize that it’s time to do more or it’s time to move on. It’s helpful to understand why you’re in the picture.