Photo Prayer 2020-09 -- The End Is Near

  The end is near! We are all going to die! Since its beginning, Christianity has eagerly looked forward to the end, to the return of our shepherd to gather us, his often fearful sheep, together. After he was crucified, we huddled together, alarmed that we would be next. But then Jesus appeared alive and whole, telling us not to be afraid, that we are loved, that all will be redeemed. Joyous, we went out from our refuge into the world bleating the good news. Even now, when fears prey on us sheep, we pray to be full of that joy. Even in the darkest times, we testify to the light. Did I say we? Oh, let us be in that number, you and me both.

Photo of smoke from an uncontrolled fire rising through trees in western Chester County, Pennsylvania.
Photo and text copyright 2020 by Danny N. Schweers.

Click here to see more photos of this fire, taken by the first one on the scene.

A few of the 643 Photo Prayers I have created since 2007 are on exhibit
at the Buzz Ware Village Center in Arden, Delaware during the month of March, 2020.

You can subscribe to these as they are created, and comment.


Audrey wrote:
WoW, deep, profound, truth 🙏🏽🕯

Anne wrote:
It's amazing to see all of that smoke at a fire and how the smoke looks like clouds all around - thank God for our First Responders in moments like these. Anne

Marti wrote:
Most powerful, Danny!

Craig wrote:
Very foreboding image. Could be our coming election…. This prayer/image reminds me of the movie Take Shelter (excellent!) in which the main character is consumed by an intimation of imminent disaster. He doesn't know if he's going crazy, or if, basically, the end of the world is approaching. Could go either way. Watching this man endure intuitions of disaster as he tries to protect himself and his family is heart-wrenching… Even tho I don't really believe in the devil, I will play his advocate: that if God had wanted to, he could have built a Universe free of suffering and pain and the brutality we see displayed thru out history and on our TV screens. Why didn't He? There have been many answers to this question proposed, none of them satisfying.....
    Above, I meant “imminent”, not “immanent”! Immanence, in Romantic landscape painting, was a Wordsworthian sense of a divine presence in Nature: a morally instructive natural theology in which God spoke through physical “types.” Conscious of the spiritual significance of the natural world, young painters should “go to Nature in all singleness of heart … having no other thoughts but how best to penetrate her meaning, and remember her instruction; rejecting nothing, selecting nothing, and scorning nothing.” I read this in an article on John Ruskin, and thought of photography, and specifically of your photography and what it entailed. I wonder how you feel about the above quote. Of course, he wrote before Photoshop! And would not have approved? (“rejecting nothing, selecting nothing, scorning nothing...”)
THE AUTHOR REPLIED: I am fond of William Wordsworth, his sister Dorothy, and John Ruskin. I have a book of Dorothy’s diary entries from the time she and her brother lived in the Lake District of England. They would venture forth into the landscape at all times of the year, at all times of the day and night, in all weather to experience intimately what Nature had to teach them. Mahatma Ghandi credits Ruskin’s book, Unto This Last, for turning him from a lawyer into a social reformer. Henry David Thoreau and the Transcendentalists had a keen sense that the Book of Nature was there for all to read and to learn from. I often create prayers by looking at my photos and wondering what is to be learned there, but I do not assume my reading is universal. Others will read other lessons.

Faye (a nurse) wrote:
Hey Danny- Is this so timely. Cannot decide if people are afraid of dying or just reporting about coronavirus. Hope you both are well.

Pamela wrote:
Wow, great photo and thought for the day.

Michael wrote:
Nice one, Dan. I especially enjoyed the message at the end.

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