I don’t like having my picture taken. I dislike it even more when someone takes my picture and posts it to social media without my preview and permission. Invariably the photos others take of me accentuate my worst features. Others tend to not be concerned with making sure I “look good” for the camera, and the result of their lack of effort exposes my forehead lines, an unattractive nose, squinty eyes, thin and pale lips, and a bit of sagging beneath my chin.
But when I take a picture of myself I go to a lot of trouble to make sure it represents how I want others to see me. My daughter taught me how to take a selfie—make sure there is plenty of natural light, set my camera on the chrome filter, angle my face with a slight turn and upward tilt, smile slightly while keeping my eyes opened just wide enough. I followed her advice the other day when I took the selfie above. After taking the picture I sent it to my photo enhancement app and added filters to enhance coloring and soften my features. Satisfied with the result I posted it to social media as my new profile picture.
I was amazed how little time it took for my friends and family to “like” my new profile picture and leave positive comments. One friend who knows how much I hate having my picture taken said it looked good. And my mom said I looked relaxed. But the truth behind the picture, however, is I was exhausted and felt a bit haggard. I had been up since 5:00 A.M. moving my belongings from Dallas to Katy. It had been a long day and the day was not near over.
It is my desire for others to see me at my best rather than at my worst, and I’m pretty sure I am not the only one who feels that way. But the truth about me is I have nothing good on my own to present to the world around me. Anything in me seen as good has been filtered through the grace of Jesus. If I am shining, it is because of His light in me. Without Him, I am exhausted and haggard, my deep crevices are exposed, my eyes are puffy, and my chin is a bit saggy. In reality, without Jesus, I’m a mess! Just as I’d rather post a filtered selfie over one that showcases my flaws, I prefer my life be seen as a Jesus selfie rather than one without Him. I'm a lot better when Jesus enhances my life.