Photography and faith – moving beyond seeing in two dimensions

 By faith we understand that the entire universe was formed at God’s command, that what we now see did not come from anything that can be seen.

Hebrews 11:3
– looking toward mum’s cottage

I have been looking over some of my favorite photographs from the past couple of months and it occurs to me that very few meet the traditional criteria of “stand in front of the subject, point the camera, and click.”

Instead I am peering through the woods, down on the ground (not so easy anymore with this knee situation!), holding my camera over my head, framing what I’m looking at through trees or a gate or something, or capturing an additional key element in the foreground.

Not manipulating the subject matter, but being conscious of how and of where and of why I am looking.

– check out the sun-spatter on the driveway

As a photographer – and as a writer/thinker – I am trying to move away from the tendency we all have to experience the world as something two dimensional. And then, when my creative spirit is fully engaged, I sometimes think “Why stop at three dimensions, how about shooting for four, or five?”

If the fourth dimension is understood as time (length, width, depth, and time) then maybe looking into and understanding and experiencing the world in five dimensions means to involve the spiritual?

Unfortunately, rather than expanding and enriching our experience, many people employ religion to see less, not more. We have all heard the phrase “Your God is too small.” Maybe another way to say this would be “Your religion is too flat!”

Unfortunately, rather than expanding and enriching our experience, many people employ religion to see less, not more.

God’s Wide Open Invitation:

The deeper into my life I get (code for “aging”) the less possible it is to see the gospel – the good news – as anything other than God’s wide open invitation to come home. All the judging and the exclusion and the insistence that cultural conservatism is God’s litmus test for acceptance (when we all know that Jesus simply says “Come…”) is evidence of two-dimensional religion.

Jesus invites us to experience God in five dimensions (and probably more).

But let’s not get too technical. Instead, let’s open up our eyes and our ears and our hearts and our imaginations and invite God to inhabit all of it. All of it for me, and all of it for you too.

As pastor Mac says every Sunday in his benediction, “God loves you beyond your wildest imagination.” – DEREK 

  • the following photos were taken to illustrate what I am talking about in the way of seeing:

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