Monday, 28 May 2012

Thing seen and unseen

A reflection from Lee Abbey

Standing on the cliff at Jenny's Leap on a warm but misty day, I look out over the sea but see only the grey blanket of fog, impenetrable, blocking my vision.
Immediately below I see the waves breaking on the rocks, messengers of an unseen power. Unseen but not unheard. The sound of the sea is strong, the crashing and heaving of the waves. By its effect, I know it.

In memory too, the sheer expanse of beauty is clear to me. The blue of sea, the curves of cliffs, the rocky beach, the distant horizon; I remember them well, I know they are there, beyond my sight but not beyond recollection.

A gull flies out from the mist, visble for seconds before merging once again with the haze. A brifly glimpsed emissary from the vastness beyond, carrying on its wings the promise of reality remembered; linking seen and unseen.

Just a few moments in one special place but an experience so often repeated.

How often I am only able to see what is immediate, my vision limited to the jostling of matters demanding attention. And beyond that the recollection of a greater expanse, a sublime beauty, the promise of eternity borne on the wings of the Spirit, calling me back to God.

 Jenny's Leap and other scenes around Lee Abbey

Saturday, 12 May 2012

Sunset Glory

I couldn't stop to take a photograph, I was driving on a dual carriageway as I returned to Darlington from Teesside. A word picture will have to suffice.

The trees and hedges were silhouetted against the brightness of the sun as were the edges of the dark clouds behind which the sun was setting. It was as if some-one had outlined the clouds in gold and beyond them, invisible to the onlooker was the source of the rays of gold, silver and orange that spread out into the sky.

I couldn't see the sun but it transformed everything. The dark rain clouds were made beautiful, The shape of the trees, not yet in leaf, was stark and clear and more noticeable than usual.

The sun, though unseen was transforming the world. And through the transformation the sun became visible.

Such is the love and grace of God.