Photo Prayer 2021-27 -- Rice Spill

The jar lid was loose and, in an instant, the jar fell. Grains of rice, nearly a cupful, rained around my bare feet and scattered. “Arrrgghh!” I cried. “Stay right where you are,” said my wife, who grabbed broom and dustpan and quickly swept around my toes as I lifted first one tickled foot and then the other and then stepped out of the way. I appreciated my wife’s work but I also appreciated my wife’s appearance as she worked, the way her orange blouse and yellow broom handle were set off by the blue cabinets, the bright red stove, and the brown oak floor. Out came my smartphone to capture the moment and now, days later, my pencil is scratching across the paper as I write down these words. The meal I went on to prepare has been forgotten but this tiny crisis, soon redeemed, shall be remembered. Even in heaven they may be saying, “Do you remember when Danny foolishly lifted the rice jar by its loose lid? Didn’t that turn out well?”

ESSAY: Click here to read an essay inspired by this incident.

Photo of the artist’s wife sweeping up the rice he had spilled.
Photo and text copyright 2021 by Danny N. Schweers.

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Rosemary wrote:
I don't say it nearly as often as I should, Danny, but I love your photo essays. You're right. We are more than grains of rice swept away by God's broom along with the dust and dirt as if we are ruined forever. Discovering what that is comprises the driving force of our Christian lives, and it is an ongoing revelation. We may fall, but we are not lost!

Bernadette wrote:
Wow- I love this but also the essay it inspired. I love how you easily see the art and beauty in simplicity; making mundane moments momentous! And I'm in total agreement w/your essay's conclusion, in that I'm glad I'm not the only one who thinks this way!

D-L wrote:
I love this.

James wrote:
Did you eat the rice?

Pamela wrote:
Love it!!

Stephanie wrote:
Ah Danny, you always give me something to think about. Admittedly, my first thought was "What? The klutz can't clean up his own mess?" But on reflection I see that the love you write about is there, in your kitchen. Just as the colors of the broom and the stove and your wife's clothing come together to form a picture, so the victim and the rescuer act as one through loving action. To once again quote my favorite...."Grace is the moment love meets imperfection. It meets us where we are and does not leave us where it found us." Even in our bare feet in the most mundane of situations, God gives us grace.
P.S. Jars of stuff are frequently suicidal. Nobody knows why.

John wrote:
I thought of you when I saw a photo of a six-piece sectional couch overlooking the Pacific Ocean. See: And that reminded me to tell you how much I enjoyed the photo of the orange blouse, yellow broom, red stove, etc. and how much I appreciated your appreciation of it!! It made me get out a book of Steven Shore photographs I bought when I saw his massive show at MoMA a few years ago — although color is not that important to him perhaps. See:


• Teri
And to take it one step further, how many times has God caught us as we were falling, and so only a little surface damage was had? Here we are, focused on the spilled cup of rice, forgetting to be thankful the whole jar didn’t shatter.

• Jean
She looks great!

• Cath
LOVE the red stove!!

• Shari
You spilled it and Barbara cleaned it up?

• Connie n
That marvelous red stove! And your very kind wife!

• Rebecca
Love the red stove! Good story.

• Carolyn
"I like rice. Rice is great if you're hungry and want 2000 of something."

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