A Reflection on June

June, 2014

Thirty days ago, I promised there’d be a post before the end of the month. More specifically, I said I would finally reveal the project I have been cultivating for these past months.

Earlier in the month, I decided to hold off on an unveiling. I’d like a few more things to come together before I do reveal the project. Rather than leave you cold, I will comment on its status.

Of the project, I’ll say this: In the time I’ve worked on it, it has never promised more certainty of fruition, than it is, right now.

From the eighth through the thirteenth, I was in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. I shared the week with a plenitude of other preteens, teens, and high schoolers. Those six days were dedicated to a summer youth camp, annually held by a local branch of joint churches. My good friend, Luke Unsicker, had invited me. I had a spectacular experience.

It was an absolute delight. A delight I cherished most, was found in the faces I met and made friends with. I treasured getting to know all that were there—the students, the preachers, and the cabin leaders. The week was full of fun, fellowship, and solid teaching.

Our week was as much fun as it was spiritually edifying. The theme of the week was centered on the Fear of the Lord (Proverbs 14:27). Many discussions, insights, and other themes that have their bearing on the Christian journey, were spurred from that overarching theme, among us all.

What resonated with me the most, was a thought that occurred to me, early on. It is worth a whole article, unto itself.

Consider the definition of fear. It holds a largely haunting meaning. Now, consider the meaning behind the Fear of the Lord. For those that have placed their faith in Christ, the “fear,” in the “Fear of the Lord,” is stripped of its haunting repercussions. “The Lord,” redefines the “Fear” that proceeds it.

The greatest fear any one thing can have, is that of the Lord—the most powerful force in the universe. For those of us that have evaded Him, it is a fear we cannot afford to rationally consider. For His judgment of us would be an event too terrible to preconceive. His presence would be the most terrifying thing we would ever know.

For those whose lives are entrusted to Christ—those walking in faith towards an eternal inheritance in the sovereign kingdom of God—the Fear of the Lord is a righteous fear. The righteous Fear of the Lord is an acknowledgment in the heart of man of His vastness and holiness.

Because He, out of love for us, redeemed us from the stronghold of evil, and calls us to live in Him, the Fear of the Lord is not crippling, but empowering.

When we place our fear in Him, instead of our earthly fears, our earthly fears crumble at the sight of Him. The Fear of the Lord gives us the faith to overcome our earthly fears.

His strength, and who He is, is such that any would tremble. But God has offered His strength to us, that in our faithfulness, we would allow our righteous fear of him to empower us, to live out the purposes He has for us.

We love Him, because we fear Him. We fear him, because we love Him. And He is love. (I John 4:8)

The redefinition the word fear undergoes, when placed in Him, is a testament to His unparalleled nature—that His being, alone, sculpts what was crippling, into a reflection of His might—a might that He instills into those who have placed themselves in Him.

I made an abundance of wonderful memories with a great group of people. I left the week, enriched.

A day before I left for camp, I worked on a paid private project. It was a graduation slideshow. This involved scanning over seventy physical photographs, in addition to the use of digital photos.

I would carefully place several photos in the scanner tray, and align them aside each other to fit nicely. I would make a high resolution scan of each round of photos. After that, the work was purely digital.

I duplicated each scan by the number of photos in it. For each duplication of a scan, I cropped around the perimeter of a photo, until all of the photos in the scan existed, individually. I kept the original scans in its own folder, and the duplication of that folder, became the photo archive in which I employed the above process of photo isolation.

From then on, I titled each photo by date, following the name of the student. I would refer to the back of the physical photo for the date that her mother had written, or I would refer to the front of the photo, where the date was stamped on a corner of the photo, by the camera.

I was hired to produce a video slideshow, but wound up organizing a photographic archive, along the way. It was a delightful project. It was an arduous task. I loved every minute of it. The systematic approach I gave it was thoroughly engaging.

By the end of the day, I’d produced the photo archive, and a fourteen minute video slideshow.

For the slideshow, I dragged in each photo from a year, beginning with 1996, into the editor. I ordered them chronologically, and allocated each of them for a five second runtime.

For the majority of the photographs, I choreographed them with movement—soft zoom-ins and zoom-outs. This gave the slideshow an air of momentum, instead of a static one-after-the-other for each image. The photos interwove with a graceful movement, instead of a more frenetic and gaudy array of transitions that are prevalent in many slideshows. I brought out the subjects in the photographs, instead of diminishing them with loud embellishment.

Upon my taking up the project, the mother of the student that asked me to do it, said I could throw some of my music—namely, jazz fusion—into the slideshow’s soundtrack. Her daughter objected to this, but rightfully so. The music tracks her daughter requested were more appropriate for her. Her relatives probably would’ve asked her when she’d become so funky, otherwise.

I’m very proud of the project. I’m glad the mother of the student asked me to do it. When the day ended, I was amazed I’d done it all. I slept well, that night. It was great work.

Several days after I arrived home from camp, my family traveled to St. Louis to spend a couple days with family for a myriad of celebrations. Among one of our activities, was touring the Gateway Arch and its museum.

An excellent documentary on the construction of the Arch, Monument to the Dream (1967), was screened. The documentary was great to see before going up six hundred and thirty feet into the Arch, ourselves.

Before the Arch was begun in February of 1963, it was estimated that thirteen men would die through the course of the project. Twelve of the estimated thirteen, did not. The men that worked on the Arch took risks, and were smart. Because they were smart, causalities were limited. Because they didn’t eliminate risk, a lofty goal was surmounted. The result is a testament to ingenuity and what can be accomplished when risks are taken.

Additionally, this month, project wise, I began editing the homeschool choir’s spring concert I’d filmed, back in May.

I also started up my personal YouTube channel, intended for miscellaneous content. There are a few fun videos I’ve posted there. (/user/DavidWesleyBrooks)

June was one of my most productive months of the year. Other personal highlights of the month included a ball game or two and much more.

June was a lively launch of summer solstice. See you at dawn, as we welcome July.

Upwards and onwards,

~Wes

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3 comments

  1. Great work, Wes. Glad that June was a good month for you in lots of ways. Now let’s see if July can be good also. It will be for me if I get to see you. Love you.

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