According to an online article that I read by Cooper Smith from the Business Insider “on average 350 million photos are added to Facebook each day”. This statistic would mean that over 1.15 Facebook users add-on average 217 photos on their own Facebook page. According to that same article, Facebook is recognized as the number one photo sharing social their favorite foods and places they have visited.
Pictures today are being taken by people using their iPhones, high-quality cameras or instant cameras which their pictures can be placed on computer CD. However, before pictures were made by people through these various devices, a photographer use to take pictures on a tripod camera. A tripod camera was a camera that was set up on a three-legged stand that allowed the person to take pictures of people, places, and things. The photographer would take the film into a room which was called a dark room which would help the photographer to develop the film into beautiful pictures that a person wanted to have for their enjoyment. As I thought about this process of how the film was developed, the Holy Spirit revealed to me how the negative situations that happen to us can be turned around for God’s glory and our success. The first way that the Lord can turn our negative situations around is placing us in the dark room. The second way that the Lord can turn our negative situations around is to help us to see that we are created in the image of God and not in the image of men. Finally, the third way that the Lord can turn our negative situations around is by us understanding our life adds value and is worth more than a thousand words.
And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose (Romans 8:28).
You are in a dark room
When the film in a camera is developed, it is brought into a dark room where a person can develop the pictures a person wants to be made. The film is placed in a solution that is very strong and if get on the developer’s skin can burn them very badly. The person who develops the film has to wear protective gloves placing the film into the solution for a period of time. In some places that we regularly shop at like CVS, Wal-Mart or Walgreens there is a machine which can have pictures made faster and giving to the person in a few hours. However, the dark room which I am speaking about is not a place where a man can find immediate relief from their dark and trying moments in their life. When the film is made in this dark room it has to soak in the solution which helps to remove all of the elements which could hinder the pictures from turning out the way they are supposed to be.
The first way that the Lord can turn our negative situations around is placing us in the dark room. One man who went through his darkroom experience was a man named Job who experience great tragedies in Job 1:13-22. In those verses all of his live stocks were taken, his livelihood was destroyed and his children were killed. However, despite all of these things happening to Job he never sinned against the Lord or blamed Him that these bad things had happened to him. Job was not aware that there was a spiritual battle going on for his life and Satan himself was attacking him to try to get Job to curse God and turn his back on Him. As a man, you may be in your darkroom because you have lost your job and you are worried about how you will replace your income. You are in a dark room through the sovereignty of the Lord and have been dipped into the strong solution of suffering and pain. You wake up one morning and see that your car has been repossessed because you have not been able to make your car payments. However, despite you going through this spiritual warfare the same way the Lord brought Job through his crisis and rewarded him with double, your time of double is coming as well. Your dark moments in the darkroom are developing your endurance, character and a confidence in your God that He will not let you down and He is not going to disappoint you (Romans 5:3-5 AMP).
Made In His Image
The second way that the Lord can turn our negative situations around is to help us to see that we are created in the image of God and not in the image of men. When I was teenage there were times where I found myself searching for an image of manhood that I could identify with and become one day. Being that I was from the streets of Detroit, Michigan, I listening to Rap Artists like KRS One, Chuck D from Public Enemy and Ice T who was a west coast rapper. The image of a man that I saw from KRS One was a man who was educated, he understood his African history and culture. The image of man that I saw from Ice T was a man who knew how to survive the streets of his neighborhood, who endured police brutality and was a person who would not allow life to break him. The image of a man that I viewed from Chuck D was being a man who understood the past struggles of black people but to take those struggles and to be a voice that would speak up for yourself and others and not allow the systems of this world to silence you.
However, after giving my life to Jesus, the Holy Spirit show through the word of God that none of these men could truly show me how to be a man of God. Each of these men though they accomplished great things in their lives none of them could address the real issues in the heart of a man. The word of God tells us that when the Lord wanted to make man He spoke to Himself and made him in His image and likeness. What does it mean to be made in the image and likeness of God? It means that the Lord made us to be a reflection of His nature, His character, and has giving man dominion. To be made in the image of God also means to put on the new man in Christ which is renewed in the knowledge of the Lord and made in Him (Colossians 3:10). The negative situations that we find ourselves in were not permitted by the Lord so that it could destroy us. However, the Lord is developing the negative in us so that we can learn to exercise our kingdom dominion. Like Adam, the Lord has given us as men dominion over all the fish of the sea, over of the fowls of the air and every creeping thing in the earth (Genesis 1:26-27).
Your life adds value
Have you ever heard the saying a picture is worth more than a thousand words? What that proverb means is that one picture can say more to a person that sees it than someone trying to express a complex idea in a thousand words. If the person tries to communicate his theory to his listeners some of his message could get lost in the conversation based upon the person level of maturity. However, there are other people who are visual creatures which when they see a photo it can cause them to either have an emotion of happiness, excitement or anger. When we live our life for Jesus our witness on how we represent Him before others can be more powerful than memorizing scriptures we can recite before others. Yes the word of God says in Matthew 10:32 that “if we confess Jesus before men, He will confess us before the Father”. However, the Apostle Paul also told the Corinthian believers in 2 Corinthians 3:2-3 that “Ye are our epistle written in our hearts, known and read of all men: Forasmuch as ye are manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ ministered by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in tables of stone, but in fleshy tables of the heart”.
Our lives can sometimes be the only bible that a person will see and learn that God is real. There are people watching you on how you are handling your negative situation on your job and you choosing not to conduct yourself like others who have lost their jobs. There are people watching how your life is a witness to them on how you handle being overlooked in the church and not promoted into leadership but others who were promoted were less qualified and not prepared than you are. Your testimonies are the pictures that have gone through the dark room of fiery trials and you have come out on the other side as pure gold (1 Peter 1:7). Your past struggles have become your strength, your pain has now become the picture of God’s glory manifested for others to know that God can do it for them if they would trust Him as He develops the negatives in their life.