’ve been thinking a lot about thresholds recently. These crossover points, places of transition, entranceways into something new, can be real or imaginary. Our recent creative workshop for those wanting to explore these lines and spaces in their own life stories has perhaps helped to bring my ponderings into focus identifying those lines I have crossed as I have stepped out in faith to embrace the unknown in a sure and certain hope that I am called to what lies ahead.
There is a sense that the Bield too is crossing a threshold as we welcome our new Chaplain Pauline and celebrate all that Robin and Marianne and those, they have drawn around them have established here. In this time of transition there is a feeling that we are starting out on a road yet to be travelled, that something new may be emerging. Through the prophet Isaiah God says:
“Behold, the former things have come to pass, and new things I declare; Before they spring forth I tell you of them.”
But at the same time everything will stay the same. What God has created will endure, the flowers will still bloom in the walled garden, the trees will still grow towards the light, the birds will still sing. What has been established here will also continue. The food will still be delicious, and that sense of peace and sanctuary that I feel each time I turn into the driveway, crossing the threshold between the Bield and the world outside will not change.
Author and Artist Jan Richardson writes
“Whether we arrive at these between-places by design, by accident, or by the choices that others have made for us, the threshold can be a place of wonders. It can also be chaotic, discombobulating, and even terrifying. Yet a threshold, chosen or otherwise, is a place of wild possibility.”
What wild possibilities might await you as you contemplate crossing your next threshold?
Let me share with you a poem by RS Thomas - Threshold
I emerge from the mind’s
cave into the worse darkness
outside, where things pass and
the Lord is in none of them.
I have heard the still, small voice
and it was that of the bacteria
demolishing my cosmos. I
have lingered too long on
this threshold, but where can I go?
To look back is to lose the soul
I was leading upwards towards
the light. To look forward? Ah,
what balance is needed at
the edges of such an abyss.
I am alone on the surface
of a turning planet. What
to do but, like Michelangelo’s
Adam, put my hand
out into unknown space,
hoping for the reciprocating touch?
In the beginning, in the ending, in the beginning again: may the God of the threshold encompass you in every turning.