Weekly Scripture: Exodus 3:1-15
There are many different settings in which we might encounter God. Perhaps you have experienced the power or peace of God while kneeling at the altar rail of a church. Maybe you have caught a glimpse of divine glory while surrounded by the natural beauty of God’s creation. Or perhaps the quiet stillness of a solitary room has provided the contemplative atmosphere in which you have heard the voice of God. God is not limited by space and time. The Holy Spirit may show up whenever and wherever the Holy Spirit chooses. Because of this, any place can become holy ground for those who are receptive to the movement of God. And often, like in Moses’s encounter with God at Horeb, God seeks us out in the mundane places in which we so regularly abide. When have you had a “holy ground” experience of God? Where were you and what was this experience like?
In my own life, God has transformed common places into holy grounds: a campground in central Kentucky where I became a disciple of Jesus Christ, the neighborhoods surrounding my small college campus that I would walk through at night praying, and even a wall thousands of years old and halfway around the world where Jesus had once come to worship. There have been moments also, defined more by what was happening than where it was happening, that God has used to ground me in the reality of his grace and lovingkindness – taking vows with my wife one late May afternoon, holding my daughters for the first time in Octobers two years apart, and kneeling at an altar on a June evening while the bishop placed his hands on my head and pronounced the authority (and responsibility!) of ordained ministry upon me. Each of these experiences was marked by a palpable awareness of God’s Spirit, a sense of rightness in both time and intention, and a feeling of wholeness within my soul. How do you sense God’s presence and work within your own holy moments? In other words, what makes a place or a moment holy for you?
I have found that I can access these holy times and spaces even when I am confronted with the surrounding noise of busyness. Many spiritual fathers and mothers over the centuries have written of inner sanctuaries that we can “build” in our hearts, minds, and souls. These are places where we can ask God to meet us, so that we might listen to one another, enjoy one another’s company, and spend time with one another for the sake of spending time with one another. Personally, this inner sanctuary has taken the form of a visual setting in which I can meet God in meditation. This setting is very similar to the image above – a wooded area with a stream flowing in the middle. There, on the banks of the stream, Jesus and I sit together. I am a little child and Jesus holds me like a parent holding their child. Often in these meditations neither Jesus nor I say anything – we simply enjoy being in one another’s presence.
Do you have an inner sanctuary where you go to meet with God? If so, what is it like? If not, what might that inner sanctuary be like if you had one? Take a moment and spend some time quietly meeting God in that holy place right now – even if you need to take some time to just begin constructing that inner altar. The God who met with Moses on Mount Horeb and who would later meet Moses there again to reveal his glory and give the life-giving law – that same God desires to spend time with you today, reminding you of your worth and value, reminding you that you are loved.
Breath Prayer: LORD God, meet with us.