The Lord shall watch over your going out and your coming in,
from this time forth for evermore. Psalm 121:8
Burdened with backpacks, tote bags, instrument cases, and all the necessities of the day we head out the door only to be met with broken glass all over the threshold. The wind has slammed the unlatched screen door with just the right force to shatter its glass pane. Our forward momentum is unequivocally halted.
There is nothing else to do but stop and clean up the mess. The broken glass presents a hazard not only to us, but to any passerby, as it litters the sidewalk as well as our front stoop. Almost without losing a beat, we set down our cargo and redirect our energy to solving the dilemma confronting us. We work in unison. One daughter heads for the dustpan, the other for a large broom. I begin to gingerly pick up the larger shards of glass and deposit them into a paper bag. Although the weather doesn’t warrant it, my husband replaces the shattered glass pane with the screen one.
We go in and out this door all the time without thinking about it. Yet crossing a threshold is not an insignificant act. The edges of places signify change, introduce difference, can lead to comfort or adventure or the wild.
As we finish our cleanup, regroup and head out the door, it occurs to me that crossing a threshold might best be done mindfully, and accompanied by prayer.
copyright © Anne E. Kitch 2013