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Invitation to Photography: Give Me a Word

Welcome to this month’s Abbey Photo Party!

button-photographyI select a theme and invite you to respond with images.

We began this month with a Community Lectio Divina practice where you were invited to pray with one of the stories of the desert fathers and mothers where one monk asks another “give me a word.”

You were invited to share your word for 2014 here (you can still share it, although prize winners have been announced).

I invite you for this month’s Photo Party to hold your word for 2014 in your heart as you walk in the world and see which images shimmer forth in response.  See what new dimensions of your word are revealed through the gift of photography.

You are also welcome to post photos of any other art you create inspired by the theme.  See what stirs your imagination!

How to participate:

You can post your photo either in the comment section below* (there is now an option to upload a file with your comment) or you can join our Holy Disorder of Dancing Monks Facebook group and post there. Feel free to share a few words about the process of receiving this image and how it speaks of your word for you.

*Note: If this is your first time posting, or includes a link, your comment will need to be moderated before it appears. This is to prevent spam and should be approved within 24 hours.

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40 Responses

  1. My word is Abandon. I had a few moments the other day so I found a quiet spot within some trees and lay down…this picture was my view as I spent some time in God’s presence. As we surrender to God throughout our busy lives…God uses His creation to show us how beautiful He is!!!

  2. ESSENCE is the word that choose me. It amazes me how this word continues to offer me deeper and deeper lessons. Through “what is the essence of something”…to “what is of the essence”…to “the essence of an herb or flower is it’s soul” which I am embracing as I study essential oils…and now to the breath prayer and how my very breath is the essence of God and my prayers are the essence of me. This is the image I created to express the lessons that my 2014 teacher/my word has brought me thus far.

  3. My word for 2014 is allow. I am learning that it is the first of a two word invitation. The second word keeps changing. This week “allow longing” is unfolding. I chose this photo to help me visualize and embody my word more fully.

  4. My word for 2014 is EMBRACE. This word has already given me so much to ponder. I have been using my camera for many years as a way of contemplating the beauty that surrounds me , allowing nature to speak to my soul.
    Winter, with its cold and dreary days, one after another, is a challenging time for me. With my camera in hand and a new, very warm coat, I have gotten outdoors and EMBRACED this season with a surprising joy. Lately, I am adding haiku-like words to my images to create a kind of photo-haiga. When the Spirit EMBRACES me, the words flow. For this, I am humbly grateful.

  5. Gratitude: I am no morning person, but I am very grateful for the grand, late Winter morning sunrises in Galway.

    1. Thank you John! Your gratitude becomes mine too marring this gorgeous
      Photo! My father was born in co Galway but
      Not as close to the see as you are living.
      This makes me nostalgic for his home and mine,
      Seattle. This may not be a Seattle sky but
      The Sea and shore are Soul homes and always
      Make me feel grateful. Blessings!

      1. Typo in my msg above here from using iPhone
        I typed “marring” or autocorrect did. I don’t recall my exact word but sharing your photo
        Shares your gratefulness!

  6. My word is eternity. This year I hope to live in the present. I want to experience each day as part of the unfolding journey of eternity. My eternal life has begun, and I want to enjoy each moment of it! My photo reminds me of the eternal cycle of regeneration. The new poppy is striving upward. It is finding nourishment in the sun, which it will store as energy to grow and produce the seeds of new life. I likewise strive upward. I find nourishment in the Holy Spirit. This nourishment of the Spirit gives me energy to produce seeds of love that will restore and relationships and give new life.

  7. Connect. By happenstance I came to possess three Raggedy Andy dolls (circa 1930) from my late grandmother’s things. It signifies her three sons. Long after we acquired them, my wife and I also had three sons, separated in age exactly as were my grandmother’s. Our third son was born on her 100th birthday, and we had already named him William for my father, also the third son. I know that all in the world are related, but the connections are mysteriously deeper than that. I pledge to engage everyone around me more fully, and to discover our close relations that too often are missed.

    1. Dear James, thank you for sharing this wonderful story and sweet, beautiful photo!
      What a magical, amazing story you have lived here with these fabulous red haired ragamuffins! I am very moved, and thrilled by this. Gratitude your way!

      1. Thank you. There’s a little more to this and in a recent reflection we pondered that one of the dolls appeared more neglected than the others. Like my dad had been as a late-born, last child. Like, shudder, our last born appears too. We’re remedying that.

        1. So interesting James, how so much speaks to your sensitivity in these darling dolls. Reminds me of that saying, “…heaven in a grain of sand, and eternity in an hour…”

          I have my first teddy bear that I rec’d for Christmas when I as one year old. I have a photo of myself with it, and it definitely looked like a different animal at that time! In the photo it had it’s eyes and nose, and all its fur, beautiful and fluffy, and a big beautiful turquoise bow. Now it has no eyes, nose, the fur is rubbed bare, and in some places the stitching is coming out. When I was 21, my father found it in our basement and wrapped it as a Christmas gift for me. I hadn’t seen it in years. When I opened it, I burst into tears, at the tenderness of his thinking of this for me. Teddy had been through a lot…accompanying me thru the flu where he got ‘the short end of the stick’ and went thru the washer numerous times. I sometimes think of having him restored in some way, but then he wouldn’t be himself…so I will just stitch him up in places and maybe put some button eyes and nose on, a patch or two, and maybe a new bow. In the story , the Velveteen Rabbit, …’you’re not real until a child loves you and your eyes have fallen out and all your fur has been rubbed off…” or something to this effect….thank you for your tender sharing. I also love the red hair on these dolls!