My younger sister is a photographer who continually amazes me by seeing details I tend to pass right over. Recently, she visited Our Lady of Peace and I gave her a brief tour. 


Just outside of Door 4, she stopped me: “Wait!”


I paused, confused. I’ve walked in and out of that door dozens of times and never noticed anything special about it. She invited me to look up as she snapped a photo of the skylight.

Whether we’re professional photographers or not, we have all found ourselves fascinated by a picture someone else has taken that causes us to see the ordinary in a new way. Maybe it’s the angle at which the photo was taken, particularly good lighting, or even a filter or editing technique. The mundane becomes extraordinary with a little perspective shift. 


One of my favorite stories in the Old Testament is the prophet Samuel’s anointing of David as king (1 Samuel 16:1-13). The Lord tells Samuel to anoint as Israel’s king one of the sons of Jesse. Samuel assumes the Lord is referring to the oldest son of Jesse, or the smartest son of Jesse, or the strongest son of Jesse. “The Lord said to Samuel: Do not judge from his appearance or from his lofty stature, because I have rejected him. God does not see as a mortal, who sees the appearance. The LORD looks into the heart”.(1 Samuel 16:7) 


Instead, the Lord has chosen the youngest son, who wasn’t even presented as a candidate for king by his father. While his seven older brothers were attending the king selection ceremony, David was out tending the family’s sheep! Jesse and his older sons may have seen a young, bothersome kid, but the Lord saw someone faithful to Him.


Maybe, just like me and just like Samuel, the Lord is inviting you to pause for a perspective shift. Your faithfulness to the tasks and responsibilities you see as “the daily grind” may never be noticed by most. However, the Lord sees you out in the field tending those sheep. He sees and marvels at the beauty of your often hidden life. St. Therese, the well-known and loved advocate of the “little way” once said: “Our Lord does not look so much at the greatness of our actions, or even at their difficulty, as at the love with which we do them”. Don’t forget to look up.


Jocelyn Johnson

Youth & Young Adult Minister