Integrated in the entirety of our lives are thin places.
Moments which mark a transition in our stories. These thin places are sacred… because they hold within them the past and the future… the known and the unknown… the old and the new… the familiar and the unfamiliar.
Each day, we get to witness tiny thin places, like the sunset transitioning from a day full of light into a purple dusk that ends in a navy sky… (and if we are lucky, scattered stars and a beautiful moon).
Then, there are bigger thin places in our stories. Like, the end of a relationship, be it a friendship, marriage or a partnership…. where your heart is broken and you are moving into a new season without the intimacy of that person. Or, most especially, thin places that come at the end of life… as one passes from this life to the next. As a pastor, I’ve gotten the deeply holy opportunity to be with a few people when they transition this way. These thin moments are holy because they are set apart…. they are not like the rest of the moments. They hold a power within them that is laced with the vulnerability of deep emotion. These are the moments that you’ll not soon forget.
Some thin places hold deep joy, like the joining of two lives in marriage, or the birth or adoption day of a little one, or a graduation which marks the end of a long and difficult academic season.
Thin places take a lot of energy. They take bravery as they always possess mystery and the unknown. And most of all, they take paying attention… because although they often hold great anxiety, they can also hold great joy. They can mark our lives where we remember the very moment when we were changed.
I wonder if these strange days where our lives are off kilter in more ways than words can elucidate, if we are not all collectively experiencing a thin place.
It’s new and strange. It’s scary and unfamiliar. It’s full of anxiety and trepidation. It’s a thin place. We are very close to it. How will it change us? Where will we go? What will we learn? What are we paying attention to?
God’s peace to you in this thin place. We are all here….. together.