My hands tense up, making them look like they are at a weird angle. Anxiety courses through my body. My toes clench, my eyes close, I smile awkwardly…my photo is being taken. A voice from my past screams at my heart – I know that voice, the comment has haunted me for so many years. I hate having my picture taken. No, I loathe it. Relief washes over me when the ‘photographer’ is satisfied with her snapshots. I have the chance to see the photos on her camera and I cringe. That voice was right. It is true. This post is for When You Hate Having Your Picture Taken.
As I flip through my family photo albums, I notice that there aren’t many photos of me. This makes my heart sad. I wish I had more taken of me…but I know how I have been held captive by fear and anxiety with having my photo taken. And that is the reason why there aren’t many. Well, things are about to change.
I’m tired of feeling like this. I’m done with living like this. The gloves are off. My sword is ready. I’m coming out fighting for my freedom.
I’m done with living like this.
The gloves are off.
My sword is ready.
I’m coming out fighting for my freedom.
The Ugly Root
When I decided that I’d had enough of this nonsense, I sought the Lord on how to proceed with gaining freedom in this area. I already know a lot about freedom fighting, but seeking the Lord is always a ‘must’.
The very first thing I needed to do was determine the root of my bondage. How did this begin? What lies have I believed? I’ve always known what the root was, I just wasn’t ready to begin dealing with it.
When I was a teen, someone who meant the world to me said damaging words to me after a modeling show I participated in. I absolutely loved walking down the ‘runway’ and had so much fun with posing and wearing different outfits. But that joy was short-lived when this simple statement was spoken over me:
“You have an ugly smile.”
And that’s all it took to build that cage around my heart. I’ve hated smiling ever since. There have been other lies along the way, but this was the beginning. Another example was when I was admiring my baby photo and I said something to the effect of me being a cute baby. This person said, “I always thought you were an ugly baby.” When I said that wasn’t a nice thing to say, this person replied “Well, would you rather I lie to you?” Yes, as a matter of fact, I would.
This is also a good reminder about our words. Our words have the power to breathe life into someone’s soul…and they have the power to bring death to a person’s heart. Let’s choose our words so carefully.
The root of your cage might be different than mine, but it is a root all the same and it needs to be uncovered.
Replace The Lies
Identifying the root isn’t enough. Let’s take a look at actual weeds in a garden. What happens if we simply cut the stem of the weed, leaving the root in the soil? That weed quickly regrows and the root pushes deeper into the soil. The only way to truly get rid of that nasty weed is to dig up the root and destroy it.
The same goes for lies that have taken root in our hearts. As painful as it is, we need to dig up those hurtful experiences and demolish them. We bring these things to our Savior and ask Him to replace those crushing incidents with His truth and love. This doesn’t happen the first time or even the second time, at least it doesn’t most of the time. We need to be consistent in bringing these things to the Redeemer for healing. We hold fast to His truth and plant it in our hearts. When we have something healthy and true growing there, weeds have no place to grow.
I realize that one of the major changes I need to make in order to be free is in my thinking. Instead of saying “I hate having my picture taken”, I will choose to think, “I can do this, with God’s help.” And I hope to get to the point where I can think, “I don’t mind having my photo being taken.” Or maybe even, “I feel JOY when my photo is taken.” Won’t that be amazing?
I’m not going for the ‘power of positive thinking’ message here, but it is important to take our thoughts captive under the authority of Jesus Christ. There is a difference. In the last photo I had taken (see it below!), I had to remind myself to relax my hands, to not close my eyes and to hold my head high! I had to think that looked nice and it was worth taking a photo of myself.
I am changing the way I think! Are you ready to change yours?
Then comes the labor.
You see, we must get out of our comfort zone in order to experience this wonderful healing. When we get ready to give birth, we have to work for it, through the pain. This is the same when we are ready to give birth to life in our spiritual walk. There are labor pains.
It isn’t enough to sit back and expect the Lord to do all the work. We have to put it into action. It has been said that faith is always in the ‘red’. Meaning that there is some risk involved. I have to get out of my comfort zone.
The lame man had to actually get up and walk when Jesus healed him (Luke 5, Mark 2).
The infirm woman had to touch His robe (Matthew 9, Luke 8).
So, what am I going to do? Well, starting May 25, I am going to take a photo of myself every single day for a whole month or have someone take it for me, and I am going to share it on social media using the hashtag #LearningToLoveMySelfie.
Do you want to join me in this awesomeness? Are you ready for this revolution to take back your heart? If so, sign-up below.
I am so excited about this! Let’s do this!
Sometimes we need a few practical tips to help with our little issue…here are a few things I found helpful:
- I want my smile to be genuine, so I’ll often ask Marcus to do or say something that makes me laugh. Try more candid photos.
- Have several photos taken; hat way I can choose the best ones and scrap the rest. The photo above had about 10 ‘takes’. Hold my head up slightly, angle my body…
- Hold my head up slightly, angle my body…
- Try briefly looking away from the camera or closing my eyes and then opening them – just to get a fresh shot.
- Try a prop or two! Aren’t photobooths the ‘in’ thing right now?
- For selfies – hold the camera up, not down. Maybe invest in a selfie stick.
I pray that this post has blessed you and maybe photos of yourself isn’t an issue for you…maybe there is something else you long to be released from. What would it be? If you could have victory and freedom in any area of your life, what would it be?
What selfie tips do you have? UPDATE: May 31, 2016
May 31, 2016
OK, I have to be honest…I am having a lot of fun with this challenge! Here are the photos I have taken in the first 6 days!
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