Look into your own heart, discover what it is that gives you pain and then refuse, under any circumstance whatsoever, to inflict that pain on anybody else.
- Karen Armstrong
We’ve been putting the finishing touches on my daughter Allyson’s apartment over the last few days, which has involved a lot of picture hanging.
From photo collages to oversized mirrors to framed artwork, we have measured and hammered and re-measured, used a level and eye-balled every single piece of wall art. (I actually had to do math this week–scary!)
And even with all of that preparation for success, once in a while we still managed to hang a few pictures too high. That required us to carefully remove the picture and the nail, reposition the nail on the wall and try again.
Apparently I’m not alone in my picture-hanging mistake. In fact, of all decorating mistakes, hanging pictures too high is one of the most common, according to my sister Martie, whom I've written about before. Pictures should actually be at eye level.
“If a picture is positioned too high on a wall, the artwork will appear disjointed from the rest of the room,” explains Martie. Instead of complementing the room, the picture becomes distracting and disconnected, serving no purpose.
Wow, so much wisdom in that decorating tip from my sister. It started me thinking about how it’s the same way in the Body of Christ. We all need a place to belong. That’s why the Bible emphasizes the importance of assembling together. Joining a church won’t get you into heaven, but being a part of a church body is important for a couple of reasons. It not only allows you fellowship with other believers, but also it gives you the opportunity to serve others and minister in your calling.
Without your special gifting–whether that’s working in the nursery or preparing meals for the needy–a church body suffers. Your contribution completes the big picture. If you’re a loner, then you’re no different than that little picture Ally and I hung too high in her living room. It was up too high, all by itself, looking pitiful and serving no purpose. So, if you don’t have a church home, find one. Don’t let past hurts from a bad experience or grudges against another church member keep you from enjoying the benefits of a church family. Get connected and stay connected. Find your place and serve your purpose! Need more convincing that being the lone Christian isn’t the best plan? Read First Corinthians 12:12-27 today and let God speak to you through his word. And remember, you are important in the body of Christ. Aim high today–just not with your pictures.
So, how high is too high? Well, since we’re not all the same height, “eye level” is difficult to determine. Here’s a guideline to help you. If you hang a picture above your sofa, the bottom of that picture should be no more than 4 to 8 inches above the top of the sofa.
Michelle Medlock Adams is an award-winning journalist and best-selling author, with more than 60 books and 1,000 articles for newspapers and magazines to her name. She was won several SELAH Awards (best children’s book and book of the year for God Knows You in 2014 and best children’s book for My Big Book of Prayers in 2012), and her book Divine Stories of the Yahweh Sisterhood was named a Family Christian Bookstores Premiere Pick in 2006. When not working on her own assignments, Michelle ghostwrites books for celebrities and some of today’s most effective and popular ministers.
Michelle is married to her high school sweetheart, Jeff. They have two college-aged daughters, Abby and Allyson, as well as a small petting zoo. When not writing or teaching writing, Michelle enjoys cheering on the Indiana University Men’s Basketball team, the Chicago Cubbies and the LA Kings. Find out more about Michelle at her website.