Don’t Miss the Moment

For some, it’s a school play, for others a local church presentation, and then there are the big productions that that happen each year at this time. The original Christmas story is acted out across the world in many ways.

For many years I was involved in a local production that took the audience on a journey to Bethlehem and to a small stable with two new parents staring adoringly at their new baby.

The last time I had opportunity to be involved was two years ago. I was one of the wise men. Hard to believe, hey? 

Being on stage in the final scene gave me some unique insights.

From where I stood I could cast my eyes across the room to catch the audience responding to the nativity scene with its live animals and a real baby playing the part of Jesus.

There was a donkey, who mostly behaved, three sheep and a few chickens. What is it they say about working with children and animals?

What became clear over dozens of performances over the three nights was the difference between those who simply immersed themselves in the story and the scene before them and those who were more interested in capturing the moment on a smorgasbord of electronic devices.

There were some who managed to capture a few images but still stay connected with the story but those who seemed to have the single goal of recording the scene seemed to lose the wonder.

From children to adults, those who just let themselves be carried along by the story would beam with joy and amazement. You could see the delight in their faces as they encountered some of the surprises in the scene. Many were very obviously moved by a simple portrayal of the first Christmas.

Conversely, those who spent their whole time trying to capture the moment saw the larger than life story through their tiny screens. There was no wonder in their faces. There was only concentration as they tried to grab the best angle and attempt to record the full 360 degrees of the immersive experience. Will they ever watch what they recorded or will the files be deleted the next time they start running out of space on their device?

Snap. Let’s go.

Thinking about what happened reminded me of a holiday in Kalbarri decades ago with my dad. In the mornings I would drive to some incredibly picturesque spots, dad would get out of the car, walk a few steps, take a couple of pictures, then get back in the car.

In the afternoons, Pauline and I would go back to those spots to explore a little more and to more fully appreciate God’s creation.

Don’t miss the moment.

I love taking photos and even recording some video now and then but I still want to be part of the moment. I don’t want to lose the wonder for the sake of some images that can never truly capture what I’m experiencing.

This Christmas I hope that I’ll see some happy photos of people enjoying the day. I even want to see some Christmas food shots. I love that social media lets us share each other’s day, but don’t spend so much time on creating the perfect shot that you miss everything the day can be.

In the same way, I’m hoping that you allow yourself to be truly immersed in the stable scene that we remember at this time of the year. Don’t give the Christmas story a quick read through. Spend some time among the animals with Mary and Joseph and consider the enormity of the occasion.

“Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel” (which means, God with us). – Matthew 1:23

God with us. That’s incredible. Put down the distractions this Christmas and let that truly soak in.

My wish for you is that you’ll really capture Christmas this year in a way that you perhaps haven’t before or maybe haven’t for a long time.

This Christmas I hope and pray that you’ll create memories that you can store in your heart rather than just the kind of memories that you can store on a hard drive.

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Winding Down the Weekend

Today I thought I’d share a handful of photos from around Fremantle, Western Australia, taken as the sun was going down last night. I’m not a great photographer but I do like trying to capture a reasonable image.

Click on any of the photos to see the larger versions of the photos.

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The Death of the Photo Album


According to a new study the growing trend of sharing photos online is causing the death of the traditional photo album. Around two-thirds of the 3000 Britons who were surveyed now catalogue their pictures on computers, tablets or on their smartphones.

Around one in five people take photos with the intention of posting them on sites such as Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, it revealed.

Meanwhile the so-called “selfie” – a snap taken by the photographer holding a camera at arm’s length – has become the most popular image captured by young people.

These account for 30 per cent of the pictures shot by those aged 18-24 and, according to the study, men take more pictures of themselves than

A lot of photos are only being stored on sites like Facebook these days. Many of those who were questioned share their photos online within a minute of taking them and over half share their photos online within a week.

Just a third of those questioned said they still displayed images using an old-fashioned book. More than half – 53 per cent – claimed they preferred to use Facebook and only 13 per cent of 18 to 24-year-olds said they had ever used an album. –

The vast majority of pictures are never ever printed and only exist in digital form. Do you think we’re losing something with the loss of printed photos and photo albums or does the way we share photos these days mean that we see more of our pictures?

I share quite a few photos through my instagram account. I also put photos on Facebook but most of my photos end up being stored on a hard drive at home.

Do you still haul out the old photo albums to have a look through from time to time? How do you store your photos? I’d love to hear from you. Let me know in the comments section of this post.

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Scenes from Distant Lands

As I’ve mentioned several times, late last year I traveled to Bangladesh and India to see the work of SIMaid’sGirls off the Streets project.

As well as seeing the great work being done in those countries I managed to take in a few sights and snapped hundreds of photos. Below are some of the pictures from the trip. Just click on any of the photos and you’ll be able to browse through the gallery.

If you haven’t already, let me encourage you to check out Girls off the Streets and find out how you can be part of this project which is bringing hope to those who had lost hope.

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A Few Hours in Freo

We spent a few hours in Fremantle today and I snapped some photos as we wandered around. Just click on any of the photos to get a closer look.

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