The 31st of July marks the birthday of Ignatius of Loyola. One of the blogs I follow has a pretty cool set of suggestions for mindfulness shaped by the spirituality of this man whose light continues to help many find their way. There’s even a nice widget I would add to by sidebar if I could figure out how to make it work (and if you know how I can, please, please let me know!). For right now, I will content myself with borrowing shamelessly from my friend Robin and Maria Laughlin at http://www.marialaughlin.blogspot.com for the graphic and telling you the link to the 31 activities is here.
The first day of my first Ignatian retreat, I was told,”during your time with us, endeavor to find God in all things”. Fortunately, my friend Robin had encouraged me to bring a camera along with me. My father and brothers are all marvelous photographers and as with lots of other things, I sidestepped my own competitiveness by not even trying. I can make absolutely no claims to quality or art in my photography but it is the most playful, freeing way I have discovered of looking for God. It has been a source of endless revelation and joy. In a strange way, even going out for my evening walk with my iPhone, it seems like the world is always made new, always opening to reveal something more about God’s ways. I have been changed by this discipline.
I was trying to think what has most moved me in these past few weeks and realized it had to do with the reflections of abundance and scarcity. On Riverland Road there are some enormous old oak trees with graceful limbs that curve down close to eyesight for even a height challenged person like me. In the deep shade of the subtropical canopy I walk under, they are covered with tiny ferns that are usually totally wilted and shriveled up. Especially in the dry months, I look at all those little ferns and all I see is death and decay.