One of the joys of producing occasional reflections is that they can remind one graphically of special moments in special places. And being able to share these on a blog, so the interest of others might be aroused, feels an especial privilege in this electronic age. This musing relates to our recent visit to Lindisfarne where we experienced a range of weather in a two week holiday - which itself made me think of how an experience of 1400 years ago would compare with our soft and hugely privileged living style. Hobthrush Island was where St Cuthbert retreated from the comparative noise of the Priory!
On Hobthrush Island (off Lindisfarne)
These are precious moments.
We sit in warm sun
On a tiny islet
Which once bore the imprint of the feet of a saint.
For us, this is a brief, comforting and comfortable experience.
But for him, the changeabilty of the weather,
would have brought times of joy, or of testing hardship
either as the sun bestowed its generous warmth,
or as wild rain, excruciating hail and bitter winds savaged
him and his exposed rocky terrain.
No place to dry a sodden habit.
Seals, used to the rhythms of the tides,
would bear witness to the worshipping patterns
of this God-loving man.
And save when those creatures of God
raised their own voices in praise,
or the roar of the ocean
vied with other elemental forces,
all would be enfolded in exquisite silence
as it is even today when the tide is high.
A beautiful gift from the same God
whom he, we
and the sonorous seals,
praise and adore.