Thursday, February 11, 2010
Thin Places by Mary E De Muth and Thursday Thoughts
In my mailbox a few weeks ago was the book, Thin Places written by Mary E De Muth. Since, reading is one of my number one passions; I couldn’t wait to get started with this new read. Generally, I can easily finish a 200 page book in a few hours; however I quickly found that with this book, it was to not be so…this book was more like an excellent cup of chia tea. It is meant to be sipped, the flavor lingering in your mouth, the sweetness that is left on the tongue…to be processed and savored. Ms De Muth is an authentic and very real author, who has greatly encouraged me as I continue to walk through a thin place in my life with the completion of cancer treatment. I loved the author's description of thin places: thin places are “snatches of time, moments really, when we sense God intersecting our world in tangible, unmistakable ways.” I thought I would share a few excerpts from the book for my Thursday thoughts….
p. 23 Jesus washes me that night with my own tears. Or are they His? But as the Psalmist so aptly writes, “Those who sow I tears shall reap with joyful shouting” Psalm 126:5
p. 26 I am Jacob in times like this. Wrestling with God over my lack of a father, He injures me so I limp. The limp reminds me of God’s God-ness and my frailty—the most humbling thin place.
p. 45 It confirms the thought that worms its way through my sojourn here—that I’m unworthy of occupying space on this earth. The weight of it is now a cannonball on my chest. I cannot roll it off. Those who pray for me watch me struggle. They weep alongside me. No safe place after all. No haven. No one who really cares just for me. Of course my mother and grandparents love me, even in that moment when I felt unwanted, illegitimate. My inability to discern their love, coupled with, perhaps, their inability to express it in a way that makes sense to four-year-old me, is what matters.
P. 47 The memory is a thin place where I have the painful privilege of extending forgiveness again, to walk with Jesus through the memory with grace-filled eyes. Any time I’m wronged (or, in this case, perceive I am wronged), I have a window to see Jesus clearer by the way I react. If I forgive, I get to experience Him. If I growl bitterness, he seems farther away. Forgiving is the deepest kinship I’ve experienced with Jesus so far, but it’s not an easy kinship.
p. 65 When I’m rejected, it sends me to this very dark pit, to this place where I wonder if I’m worthy enough o take up space on this earth.
p. 99 Clean shiny folk don’t have the sacred privilege of understanding God’s greatness or power because they’re so full of their own beauty. Messy folks understand the metaphor of an earthen vessel, a clay pot, a canister that holds refuse. And, in that humble state of mess-dom, we welcome the beauty of Jesus within.
Everyone is invited to tell their story of a thin place in their own life . . . and an opportunity to win a Kindle reader for doing so!
Here is the link:
Here is my 259 word thin place:
In December 2008, when I was 40 years old, I had an unwelcomed guest that tried to take up residency in both of my breasts. This guest was an aggressive, invasive breast cancer which has forever changed my life. Instead of preparing to celebrate the birth of Christ with my husband and children, I found myself starting cancer treatment which consisted of a double mastectomy, followed by aggressive chemotherapy, and extensive daily radiation. My treatment road has been rough with many potholes and unexpected detours. My body has been stripped physically; I experienced baldness, am without breasts, experienced extreme fatigue and weakness, along with debilitating pain. I have been broken emotionally, experiencing loneliness and deep sorrow, along with a very real reality of life and death. I have been strengthened spiritually, experiencing God’s love for me, in a fresh and exciting new way. Throughout this long journey, God has met me at every step, many times arriving before I. I have learned to trust, even when I don’t understand His plan. As this type of cancer has a high rate of reoccurrence, I am still in a thin place, wrestling like Jacob, walking every day with the scars of treatment yet trusting in our Lord, finding comfort in His promises. The road of cancer can be hard and challenging, filled with frustration and tears at time, laughter and joy at other times…I take comfort in knowing that there is a God who gives me strength when I can’t stand, courage when I am frightened, and love through it all.
Thin Places by Mary E De Muth http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/031028418X
provided a review copy of this book