I’m reading a lot about monasticism and ancient spiritual disciplines right now. It probably doesn’t sound that interesting, but I am the kind of person who loves a deep dive into a research project. (So much to learn in this world and so little time with which to learn it!) As a mature but still hungry Christian, I am looking into ancient disciplines as a tool for knowing God more intimately.
In my reading this week I came across the term “thin places.” The Celtic Christians used this word to describe the places where heaven seemes especially near, where the invisiable barrier between our seen world and the spirit world becomes thin. Santuaries, altars, prayer rooms, and chapels have all been considered thin places. Nature offers thin places as well: mountain tops, sea sides, deserts, and trees. The thin place is anywhere that God feels especially near.
I’m looking for thin places this week. I’ve certainly felt them before but I’ve never used this terminology. I remember the thin place in the hospital rooms of my infant daughters – one went to Jesus, the other one stayed with us but pushed us near to Him at the same time. I feel a thin place anytime I visit a beautiful cathedral or an old country church.
I wonder, where do you find thin places? Does it always seem thin in the same place no matter your mood or circumstances, or do thin places come and go? Could you feel a thin place that I didn’t notice at all? Is this just a hyper-spiritual idea or is there some truth to this experience?