(Photos by Selma Komisky)
By Selma Komisky
I always pray and allow the Holy Spirit to lead me as I go on adventures and encounter amazing and unexpected people and places. Half the fun is the mystery of just observing and, at the right moment, capturing things that unfold before me.
In essence, my photography niche is street photography; it led me down a busy street to a young man, crouched down on the sidewalk holding a cat that had a Batman logo on his bandanna. Immediately, they caught my eye as I observed the people nonchalantly walked by like he was invisible.
My heart broke and at that point I was drawn to him like a magnet. He mattered and I needed to tell him. I gently approached him, squatted down to his level, and asked him his name. He replied, “My name is Paul and this is my cat Gemini.” Shielded by his hood, he timidly kept looking down at the floor petting his kitty.
I didn’t know when was the last time Paul had actually had a normal or real conversation with someone who treated him with dignity as a person. We exchanged words and he began to share his story. As he shared, I have found out he had been homeless for quite some time. No judgment. Sitting amidst of chips and candy wrappers I asked If he was hungry and he nodded. I told him dinner was on Jesus. Paul told me he believed in Him. He also let me pray with him.
I then told Paul I was a photographer and asked permission if I could take his picture. My photo of Paul was not to exploit him, but to show the world that he mattered and had worth. He smiled, looked down and said, “OK.” I said, “Can you look up at me Paul?” I asked. When he looked at me I saw beauty in his eyes. It reminded me of Genesis 1:27 that says, “So God created mankind in His own image…” How precious must man be in the eyes of our Creator.
Everyone has value to God. The world looked at him as insignificant, trash, a low life, but God let me see a glimpse of his beauty. When he looked at me, I saw it and I captured it in a few shots. God taught me the lesson that He believes you matter. He sees people. He sees their beauty. This is God’s heart and should be ours as well. Paul mattered. We as people all matter.