As I ponder “What has surprised me?”, I think of my husband’s Uncle Herman who is now in hospice care… During our most recent visit he pretty much had just one response to everything he heard, which was “Wow!” If I ever come to a time in life where one word remains, I hope to be like Uncle Herman.This journaling image will also serve to remind me of a fairly recent Uncle Herman story. In the Dementia unit, he was given the task of opening the blinds every morning. No one, however, was allowed in the kitchen. Therein lie his dilemma… there were blinds in the kitchen. As he was opening them, he was caught by an attendant and without hesitation, Uncle Herman yelled out, “Surprise!”… yes, complete with jazz hands.
Continuing on with the Ignatian Spirituality examen questions…
What do you hope for, in your wildest dreams?
Have any of these day-dreams become “God-Dreams” — visions capable of releasing new energy in you, potentially changing the direction of your life? ~Margaret Silf, Ignatian Spirituality for Everyday Life
On a journey of creating images with Ignatian Spirituality examen questions…
“The greatest and most important problems of life are all in a certain sense insoluble… They can never be solved, but only outgrown…” ~Carl Gustav Jung
Grateful for the poetry of Joe Grant whose words so beautifully aligned with what was stirring in my soul this morning –https://engagedpresence.wordpress.com/2017/11/10/a-healing-season/
It all began with a question: What if during Advent, we began with four lit candles and each week lit one less, quieting/stilling our way toward the center Christ candle? How could a question like that be imaged?
One person said it’s like a countdown… Yes, indeed! I’ve also suggested that it mirrors our physical experience (in the Northern Hemisphere) with light.
The image breaks into five vertical panels, from right to left: four lit candles, three, two, one, and the Christ candle with the Madonna and Child.
One of the things that delights me is that in the tradition of reading left to right, the image begins with Christ. God is with us all along. Becoming quieter can help us discern that. I had a conversation early on about my desire to have people move through the image from right to left, like coming back to the beginning. The person I was talking with told me about the “O, Antiphons.” Really, really interesting stuff… https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/O_Antiphons. And although it can’t be proven, I choose to leave room for the mystery.
Download (free) this image in black and white using the link below. Add your own color this Advent!
Check out the liturgies that accompany the images… it’s all free here from LEAD – https://waytolead.org/portfolio-item/advent-2017/
A friend recently described one of the images above as a “visual mantra” … a partnering of words that was very pleasing to my soul.
Inspired by prayers written by Rev. Melissa Johnson Bills for the Tenth Triennial Gathering of the Women of the ELCA, it’s my hope that working on the images is preparing me for the “All Anew” theme of the Gathering.
Some morning journaling time with a page awaiting completion led to an invitation outside. See the burning bush at the lower left of the second photo? When I got closer, I realized there were white blossoms on it, just doing their thing, opening to Love. Perhaps I should have removed my slippers… they’re quite wet now. 🙂
The Gospel liberates the inner light of love; and love can hold paradox.
I am moved by the mystery of how light is both particle and wave, depending on the questions you ask of light. I don’t pretend to understand what that means. Somehow I trust that Love has the power to hold that mystery.
Curiosity about the origin of the word ‘attention’ led to this image. Of all that swirls, once in a while there is connection.
“Everything is in relationship with everything else.” ~Richard Rohr
It seems that even the very pages of my journal are supporting this message.
“May I stay forever in the stream.” ~Mary Oliver, Upstream
I’m beginning a new online journaling session through the season of Lent, dwelling in the wisdom of Mary Oliver’s Upstream and Richard Rohr’s Daily Meditations.