Sunday, 13 March 2011

According to the Sage Fred, Celtic Christianity knows thin places. It feels to me like fissure lines where the closeness of Heaven touches, actually touches, the stones and the ground and the skies breathing into the places where souls have chanted glory for long. My favourites are Jerpoint Abbey, Co. Kilkenny and especially Devenish Island, Co. Fermanagh. Today I'm thinking of Lent as one of my favourite thin times.

In the Library just now we're starting to go through the annual Appraisal Process. Jokingly late one night we flicked through a Professional Develoment book from the Business School trolley. When I paraphrase this quote I still start to cry so hilarious was it at the time- you'll have to remember that it was late! The advice therein was that in work you should let your light shine because by doing so you subconsciously give others the right to let theirs shine too. (Mags stops typing to wipe her eyes...)

But today our special preacher finished his thoughts with much the same idea. That we should walk our faith every step. Live our faith every step. Because only then would we give others the right to step out into theirs too. So I'm going into this Lenten week with the thought that as I walk with Christ towards Passion, I might walk openly and hopefully encouragingly. In the thin place, at a thin time!

11 comments:

Angela said...

Thank you SO MUCH for this post. I have had a hard week, and felt like I have not only stumbled myself, but also tripped others up along the way.
Somehow your words [and the words of The Pastor a few minutes ago] have encouraged me not to despair.
I'll go to bed now,and tomorrow I shall seek to step out, carefully, slowly, one paceat a time.
Bless you, mags xx

Pom Pom said...

Oh, I love Angela's words up there. Thin place. Thin times. So good.
I am printing out that picture of you and putting it in the Pom Pom studio so I can think of you my good soulful friend.

Gumbo Lily said...

"Thin times" That's an interesting way of thinking. It is in thin times that we tend to reach out to the Lord more.

Thanks,
Jody

Jane and Chris said...

Our vicar ended his sermon today with, "Serve our Lord for His sake, not yours". perfect for Lent, I thought.
Jane x

Betty said...

Thankyou, a good thought to hold on to that there are 'thin places'.

Elizabeth Rimmer said...

I like the 'thin places' very much! So nice to meet you!

Floss said...

I love the thin places - when we lived in north Cumbria I was aware of them a lot. They really do seem to be more present in places that have had a Celtc influence, but that can't be true, so I'll have to get looking for them in the South of France now! I like your funny moment but I do see its relevance to walking our faith with each step too - is this what we are doing with out pause for Lent? I hope so. Thanks very much four your comment, too.

Elizabethd said...

Yes, step by step, slowly and thoughtfully.
Lovely post Mags.

Catherine said...

Hello Mags, I find that I am really enjoying this time of reflection as we join in with "The Pause". We each have had to sift through a stack of thoughts, beliefs, distractions & other busyness in order to find our own "thin" place to share, really..more distilled & purposeful than the usual post. Perhaps thin places are more transparent & a little more authentic. Lovely to catch up. Much love Catherine x

Left-Handed Housewife said...

I was just thinking about thin places the other day. When we were driving to Virginia last week, there were spots in the woods along the road that seemed thin that way to me.

I am so far from living my faith every step. I hope to one day, though.

Send me your address, would you? fdowell@mindspring.com

xofrances

Fat Dormouse said...

I'm a bit behind in catching up with the Pausers...How did I miss your thoughtful post?!

As Floss says, the "thin places" so often seem to be connected with Celtic Christianity (whatever that means!). My "thinnest" place was Iona, I think. That truly is the place where I think I felt closest to God. Maybe Taizé, not too far from us, is another thin place. I may have to explore that one day...