Great Plains Daily Devotional for 9/1/2020

Today please be in prayer for

Brownville UMC
Missouri River District
Cedar Hill UMC
Missouri River District
Madonna Rehab Hospital
Missouri River District
Elkhorn Hills UMC
Missouri River District

Today's Lectionary Text


Proverbs 4:25

Let your eyes look directly forward,
    and your gaze be straight before you.

Today's Devotional

I was born into a family of amateur photographers. On any family vacation you could count on at least one camera bag being included and that a trip would be made to the local camera store either in Topeka or Kansas City for film for the journey. We visited a lot of several so there are several photos of my sister and I in front of “Welcome to ...” signs, but more prevalent were scenes of nature. We went to a lot of national parks, wildlife refuges, zoos, etc.
When I was a teenager I learned to use my dad’s old camera, taking it to Yellowstone with my aunt and capturing a grizzly bear coming over a rise, rocks that upon later inspection turned out to be wolves, and various other roadside attractions along the way.

As an adult I recently purchased my own Canon Rebel. Digital photography has been an adjustment. It has many benefits over film. You don’t have to wait a few days or a week to find out all your pictures were taken with the lens cap on, or out of focus, or that you focused on the foreground when what you really wanted to focus on was in the background. I will say the instant feedback on the digital camera is nice, but it’s not always perfect when you go to view it on your computer. There are still some surprises to be had.

Cameras can trick you. Or your eyes through a camera view finder can trick you. You look through and think you are focusing on one thing when the camera is focusing on another. Getting the lighting, focus, etc. just right on my Canon is much harder than a point-and-shoot and can be very frustrating.

Focusing on the right things in light is difficult. You would think it would be easy. We know we are to put God first and then everything will fall into place. But we get distracted. Our focus shifts and we end up with our eyes fixed on what is right in front of us rather than looking beyond at what God wants us to be looking for. My camera loves to do this. It wants to pick the closest thing rather than what I want. I may need to move to get the camera to see the shot that I want.

When we aren’t focused on what God wants for us, he nudges us to move into the right position. That might mean a conversation with a friend, an email from your church, or a stray thought in your head. When we focus on God and what God wants life becomes clearer, sharper, and more beautiful than we could have ever imagined for ourselves.
-Lisa Soukup
communications administrative assistant

Prayer for Reflection

God of wonders, thank you for the beauty of this earth. Help us to focus on you first, so that your light may shine through us that we may be a snapshot for others of how to be your child in this world.


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