Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Photoshop For Memories? Hmmm!

I've been thinking recently about how important stories are to me. They affect me in so many ways! Here's an undeniable fact: I am a sucker for true life, hilarious stories. I really enjoy sitting down with someone and hearing about their childhood and all the scrapes they got into! At the same time, I'm beginning to see that I've memorized my whole life and packaged it in a series of stories.

They are supposed to be funny stories; stories that I'd want to share with my kids to make them laugh or to teach them something or to encourage them, or to just plain scare them! Both of my parents tell stories about their childhoods and I want to do the same. But I realized something the other day: these sorts of personal life stories color the way I see my life!

I slant my stories a certain way, highlighting dramatic events depending on the purpose of the story. Spotlight on the interesting, downplay anything that slows the story down or doesn't agree with the thesis idea. It's not that I change facts in the story (I'm not lying or even trying to deceive.), but there is a definite slant to the story. Do you know what I mean? There is always the "conclusion"! I may come out and say what the conclusion is, or it may be unspoken, but point is, the stories are vivid because I've gone back and edited them!

My friend Sarah is an amazing photographer. I LOOOOOOVE looking at her pictures and I could pick her work out of a line up, easy-peasy. But there is a process that her raw pictures have to go through before she hands them on to the bride and groom. She edits them! Crop this picture, add more blue to that bride's eyes, add this filter, etc. Editing! The angle of the shot was genius, but to make the bouquet pop out of the picture, she had to change the whole color scheme of the picture! She picks what she wants to highlight.

Does anyone get what I'm saying? Or am I being too abstract?

I looked back at couple of my more unpleasant childhood memories with this new thought. Did so and so really say such and so with that special emphasis? Maybe that incident only stands out on the ribbon of my timeline because I colored every detail of that memory with such vivid colors. Maybe if I went back and looked at that memory now, it would just be a regular "bouquet" that I had to choose to highlight.

It's such an interesting idea. It made me take a look at my memories again and search for the hidden overall conclusion to the collection. I'm sad to say, I wasn't impressed with what I found.

I'm beginning to see that the devil wants to me to pass a certain judgment on my life. I don't want to agree with him on ANYTHING. (Other than it stinks to be him!) So now, I'm going back through my memories one more time. This time, I'm looking for the influence of God! Those moments when I knew that I deserved one thing and for some reason I received so much better, the times when something good and perfect was unexpectedly offered to me, and the many times He saved me and I didn't even notice that He was there. I want to redefine my life. Wanna see what I've come up with?

My life has been amazingly blessed, cover to cover, and I can always find something to be thankful for!!