Our lovely Rector Tony Billett, who lives across the road, offers me a talking/listening session once a fortnight which I value enormously. In one of our discussions Tony provided an illustration:
A woman farmer was dying and her sons sat around her bed and she told them that their inheritance lay somewhere buried in the farm. When she subsequently died the sons dug and dug but nothing was found. They managed to dig up all the ground across the farm.
However, over the next two years the boys reaped bumper crops from the farm. Then they realised, yes, their inheritance was the fertile ground that resulted from their digging.
Tony described my current position as being a fertile emptiness.
I have been following the daily contemplations written by Richard Rohr, a Franciscan priest and ecumenical teacher, who offers useful reflections about being in a liminal space (the waiting areas between one point in time and space and the next) but for me, the question is where and how this will end? It can feel at times that you are on the verge of something – but what? It could be quite unexpected and exciting, but to be in this liminal space means a loss of how you lived before, in physical emotional and spiritual ways, in ways that I have never experienced before. It is unnerving, making you vulnerable and out of control. I just need to trust that I will come out the other side having learned, using the time creatively, constructively, and having a new perspective, or a new reality as Rohr suggests.
Whilst I wish for all of this to end I have an increasing hope that all will be well.
It is Sunday morning and Andrew Marr has just finished (no church of course – all closed up!), there is a focus on the devasting consequences of the current pandemic
Where is this going to end and leaving us in the new normal we wonder and pontificate? An uncomfortable place to be, a place of separation, a place of fear as life feels we are exposed and in between.
Later watching Songs of Praise, it makes you realise that gatherings of people and face to face social interactions may be the thing of the past. We do not know what our new normal will be like in fact we may all be online for much of our communications for a long time to come, we just do not know. When people talk about social isolation and staying at home I might comment “welcome to my world”!