Skip to main content

picture taking


I have been told that I have the ability to see things in a unique way, which is why I can take some fine pictures. I am able to blot out all the busyness around me in order to see an important and interesting part of life. And by taking a picture of it, I am able to single out these rare moments and show others the things that capture me, that grab my attention, that speak to me of beauty and strength and life.

Dean was speaking this past Sunday at our gathering about using the gift God has given you, and one of the verses he read struck me right in the solar plexus: "...some of us recognize when God's Spirit is present." from I Corinthians 12:10, The Message. Most of the other translations of this particular passage in scripture say something about the discerning of spirits, but phrased like this, I saw it in a new and very relevant way. Yes, I have the ability to see God in situations. I can feel him very near in a tangible way at times; I can sense when there is increased activity in the spiritual realm (often times it comes as a cold shiver or abrupt jerk as if something surprised me); and most importantly (I think), I can find God's living presence and activity in almost any place and any time if I but stop and look for it.

This really is a gift, and I have tried to take care to cultivate and develop it to the best of my ability over the years. Many times I still feel very much ignorant of God's workings in this world of ours, but the "asking and listening and learning phase" is one I never grow tired of and will happily live in forever.

The challenge for me now is to be able to take pictures of where and how I see God at work and show them to people so that they can see them too. How does one do that? Perhaps I can explain it, maybe I can act it out, perhaps it is an attitude or posture that can be caught, or I might just grab someone and take them with me, encouraging them to participate in some action in order to see. I don't fully know how to take spiritual pictures so that others can see them, and I suppose the goal is to have people go there and experience it for themselves, but sometimes a picture is helpful. It says what words alone cannot and it invites people to go there because they have seen it. Now, they want to taste it.

This is the ferris wheel and one of the halls at the Old Port in Montreal, taken at Nuit Blanche. Movement and solidity side by side.

Comments

coeuri said…
I just want to tell you how much your writing is painting pictures for my heart. I feel so connected to what your share.

Linda A

Popular posts from this blog

what binds us together?

For the past few weeks, I have been reading a book by famed psychiatrist M. Scott Peck which chronicles his travels (together with his wife) through remote parts of the UK in search of prehistoric stones. The book is part travel journal, part spiritual musings, part psychology, and part personal anecdotes. A mixed bag, to be sure, and not always a winning combination. At one point, I considered putting the book aside, not finishing it, but then Peck started writing about community. He is no stranger to the concept. He has led hundreds of community-building workshops over the years, helped start a non-profit organisation dedicated to fostering community, and written a compelling book about the topic, one which greatly impacted me when I read it oh so long ago.[1]

In preparation for a course I am teaching next year, I have been doing quite a bit of study on unity and community. Once you start thinking about it, you see and hear evidence of it everywhere. (See my blog on the impact of b…

job hunting

I am on the hunt for a job. PhD in hand, I am a theologian for hire. The thing is, not a lot of places are hiring theologians these days, and if they are, they are usually looking for scholars with skills and experience outside my area of expertise. Today I found job opportunities for those knowledgeable in Religion, Race, and Colonialism, Philosophy and History of Religion, Islam and Society, Languages of Late Antiquity, Religion, Ethics, and Politics, and an ad for a Molecular Genetic Pathologist. Not one posting for a Dramatic Theologian with  a side order of Spirituality and a dash of Methodology.

I know, I know. My expectations are a bit unrealistic if I believe I will find an exact match for my particular skills. I know that job descriptions are wish lists to some extent, so no candidate is ever a perfect match. I also realize that one must adapt one's skill set according to the requirements of the job and be flexible. But there are so few jobs which come within ten or even…

lessons from a theological memoir and a television series about lawyers

It's a hot Wednesday afternoon, so let's talk about false binaries. Basically, a false binary or false dichotomy happens when a person's options are artificially limited to two choices, thereby excluding all other possibilities. Insisting on the limited choice of either A or B leaves no room for middle ground or another, more creative solution. In other words, a false binary assumes the rest of the alphabet (after A and B) does not exist.

Binary thinking is quite prevalent in our society. Either you are for me or against me. Either you are guilty or innocent. Either you are a Democrat or a Republican, conservative or liberal. Either you are a Christian or a pagan. Either you are all in or all out. Admittedly, it is convenient to see things as either black or white, but we live in a multi-coloured world and not everything fits neatly into two categories. This is why insisting there are only two choices when, in fact, other options exist, is labeled as a fallacy in logic an…