Pray with a Camera

In the snap of a shutter you can enrich your prayer practice.

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Posted in , May 29, 2015

With the snap of a shutter, you can enlarge your prayer life.

Today's guest post is by spiritual director Kasey Warren Hitt.

I shared in a previous guest post about looking at black-and-white photos as a creative gateway to prayer and Bible study. Since then, I have also enjoyed taking photos as a prayer practice. 

Today, with smartphones, many people carry a camera with them everywhere they go. Even if you are more “old school,” however, you can still turn a treasured camera or even an inexpensive disposable camera into a valuable aid to prayer. 

Here are a few pointers for praying with a camera: 

  • Reflect on one photo. What do you notice now, after taking it? What does the black and white version reveal that the color one did not? What does your choice of angle or perspective say about you? Your subject? What does the image stir in you? What insight do you get from it or the exercise itself? How does this photo change or deepen your prayer?
     
  • Close your eyes. Notice the darkness. It's like the beginning of creation before light and color burst onto the scene! Slowly breathe in and out for a few moments, breathing in the spirit of life present at creation and in you.
     
  • Think of a question or issue you have taken into prayer recently or that comes to you now. Or, consider your own spiritual landscape at this time. Let this guide you as you pick up your camera or phone and begin taking photos.
     
  • Take some time to reflectively view the results. You might set your filter to black-and-white (see my previous post) or use a special filter. You might upload and print a picture or simply scroll through the photos you took.
     
  • ​You might journal your thoughts or conversation with God, giving thanks for whatever you discovered. Allow your photo to continue to shape your prayer life by taking it with you, hanging it somewhere or placing it in your Bible (perhaps near a passage or verse that seems relevant). 

 

Kasey Warren Hitt is a spiritual director and retreat leader with a Masters of Divinity degree and a Certificate in Spiritual Direction at The Seattle School of Theology & Psychology (formerly Mars Hill Graduate School). She lives in Nashville with her husband Russ and their children Alaina and Alex.

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