What does it mean to see something? We could say we understand or comprehend. Perhaps we might say, “I get it.” When we “see” something we realize it. To see is to perceive or grasp an idea. But the most basic meaning of to see could be expressed in the words observe and notice. To see means both to understand in our minds and observe with our eyes.
A photographer must be able to “see.” A photo worthy subject might appeal because it’s rarely seen. Great nature photographers are able to position themselves in places to obtain unusual photos of wildlife. This requires not only ability to use a sophisticated camera, but knowledge of wildlife behavior. It also requires exceptional patience. Some nature photographers learn to see the beauty found everywhere in nature.
One of my favorite things to do with a camera comes while sitting down outside in a wild place. My objective is to find photo worthy subjects while sitting in one place. This takes time. Our minds and eyes need to begin to work in tandem. Using our mind and our perceived sense of the beautiful does not happen instantly. This takes concentration. Sitting in one place allows mind and eyes to work together. Our normal practice is to use our eyes to enable us to move from place to place while outside. Sitting still allows our minds to process the beauty around us. In a wild place there are thousands of beautiful things. We are accustomed to only seeing the big obvious things. The bright color of a Rooster Pheasant on snowy ground is an instant eye catcher.
But beauty is also found in nature details. A single leaf contrasted by white snow. The green of lichen on a background of white. Shadows on a bright winter’s day and a winding track of a deer mouse are beautiful. So are the convoluted chunks of ice thrown up by the river current beneath them. Sunlight on the bark of aspen trees on a bright winter day draws the eye. Dark limbs frosted with white snow are beautiful. To see these things requires stillness. It requires a mind actively seeking the silent beauty found in nature details. It takes time for nature photographers who capture the beauty of nature details to develop the skills to see.
Our subject has been seeing, to observe and understand. What does it mean to you to know that God sees us? What does it mean to know God understands our minds and hearts? How wonderful, he not only sees us, he comprehends who we are. No human can understand you as God does. He has seen you since before you were born. He saw you in your mother’s womb. He not only saw you, he formed you. He “knit” you together. All of your days were written in his book before you were born. God sees you. He knows when you rise and when you sit. His mind actively seeks you, but he does not need the practice to see you like a photographer. He sees you perfectly every moment of your existence.
Is God’s intent for harm or good? Relax, he sees you because he loves you. The Psalmist wrote from experience. He said, “The Lord protects the unwary; when I was brought low, he saved me.” Psalm 116:6
It is delightful to see the work of a photographer who sees the beauty of nature. It is life changing to know eternal, everywhere present, all-knowing God not only sees us, he knows all about us. Every problem, every hurt, each fear and every sad moment God sees it all. The one who made all beauty in nature protects and saves us. True beauty lies in this.