Thursday, February 21, 2013

Olan Mills to the Rescue!

Olan Mills went kerplunk (I think) but "LifeTouch to the Rescue!" doesn't have the same panache. 

If you're a cradle roll member you've sat for at least 472 Olan Mills sessions in your lifetime.  During my last photo shoot I was asked to rest my hands under my chin and sort of relax on a mirror.  Since I'm not a senior in high school I said "No thanks" but the photographer wouldn't relent.  So I rolled back to 1999 and let my hair down (figuratively speaking).  YOLO... right kids? (first and last time I will type YOLO) 

I laughed the entire time.  The photographer didn't love that.  Anyway, I wish you could have seen them trying to sell me an 8 x 10 of that situation. 

A pre-Sam pastel-inspired photo of the McKown family circa 1985/6.

I love looking at old church directories.  Not only is it a stroll down memory lane--it's a chance to smile at the great cloud of witnesses who molded and shaped me.  When I'm in Kentucky I look at directories from the 80s and 90s.  I see GA leaders, Sunday School teachers, friends and characters (!).  I close the book feeling grateful. 

Sometimes though it is hard to make a new church directory because it's an acknowledgement of change.  In the old directory, the Rains family beamed.  In the new directory, Mrs. Rains is widowed.  Pastors have changed, people have moved to new cities, tragedies have occurred.  Life has happened.  A new church directory is an acknowledgement of change.

The happy side of a new church directory is also acknowledgement of change!  Babies are born, new families and individuals move to town and there are marriages to celebrate. Pastors have changed, people have changed, celebrations have occurred. Life has happened.  A new church directory is an acknowledgement of change.

At Scottsville Baptist we're gearing up for a new photo directory.  Perhaps it sounds small to focus on something as simple as a directory, but I think it can be significant.  Those who have effectively joined "First Baptist Bedside" can see photo directories as a time of recommitment--because at the end of the day you have to decide whether or not you'll be included in the pages.  You've got to suit up/dress up/man up/woman up and consider if being a church of one is really working for you.  And you have to decide whether or not you'll be part of forming the next generation. 

For those of us who are part of the church every Sunday a directory is a gentle reminder that our photos might comprise a great cloud for someone else 20, 30, 40, 50 years down the road.  When the next generation flips through the pages, what kind of church will we have left them?  Don't you want to be part of what God is doing now--and by extension--in the future?  I hope so.

It's just a photo directory?  I don't think so.

Say cheese!  Be part of the church directory and most importantly:  Be part of the church.

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