Moved Mountains

Banner - Mt Trio, Stirling Range National Park, Western Australia - (c) 2007

Friday, February 02, 2007

This is Holy Ground

My Family in Boranup Forest

I stand on holy ground when ...
  • I am staring at the night sky, soaking up the immensity and beauty of the Milky Way, or the rings of Saturn, or the folds and fine detail in the Great Orion Nebula, or the cratered surface of the Moon, or the motion of the Galilean Satellites as they dance around Jupiter.
  • When I am on the summit of Bluff Knoll (the mountain in this blog's title image) looking out over the other peaks and the farm land and the bush, watching the wedge-tail eagles soar higher and higher on thermals.
  • When I'm walking along the beach absorbed in the sound of the crashing waves, watching dolphins playing in the surf and terns dive for bait fish.
  • When I'm walking through Boranup forest, surrounded by the tall, white trunks of 100 year old karri trees, and immersed in the cool shadows of the undergrowth, watching a male fairy wren dance for his mate.
  • While watching my children play, using their amazing imaginations to create entire worlds and then to feel the soft touch of a small hand slipping gently into mine and to look down and see two soft, blue eyes looking lovingly back at me.
  • When watching the sun set over the ocean with my beloved, feeling her closeness, knowing together we share more in memories and emotions and experiences than any words can express and that she is my gift from my creator.
At these times I know I am standing on holy ground.

Sometimes we fall into the trap of making one particular place more holy than another. I am thinking specifically of our churches or sanctuaries. How often have you heard the church building called "the house of God"?

The truth is the house of God is not made of bricks and mortar, it is a living temple. In Old Testament times God dwelt in the Tabernacle, but now he dwells in his people. We - the living, called out assembly of believers - Christ's physical presence in the world, are the temple of the living God and the universe is our cathedral.

So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit. Eph. 19-22

Thanks to Holly for inspiring me!


Shannon said...


What a beautiful post man...thanks for the reminder that we can find holy ground anywhere we are because in us is where God dwells. How often we short change ourselves simply because we fail to recognize God in everything.



Glenn said...

I am all for seeing God wherever He is. I know that my evangelical tradition has exalted His revelation in Scripture way above all of the other ways He reveals Himself.

I find Him in little blessings, in the things that make me laugh, in children and young people who dance in church when they are not supposed to, in the inhibition and innocence of my two-year-old grandson, in great theater, art, and architecture, in great meals with family and friends, in sunset walks, in a warm memories, in music that rocks.. and soothes, and on and on.

Reggie McNeal points out that God loves the people of the world and is very much at work there. I wonder, how do we get in sync with God, rather than always try to corral Him and explain Him?

The Creature said...

Thanks Shannon,

You said:

How often we short change ourselves simply because we fail to recognize God in everything.

Reminds me of a joke about a drowning man, a canoe, a speed boat and an ocean liner. Have you heard it?

The Creature said...

Thanks for sharing your experiences of God Glenn.

How do we get in sync with God? That is a good question. I know I am so prone to corralling him - I guess if we are able to at least recognise and pull ourselves up when we are doing it, we are part way there. What do you think?

Helen said...

Thanks Andrew - I love the idea that all these places are holy ground. I agree that if anything is, these places must be.

Actually I have one to add: when I'm in the presence of someone showing great courage in the face of suffering - that feels very holy to me.

The Creature said...

Thanks Helen,

Courage in suffering shows great strength indeed. I am often astounded and moved by the courage children show in times of suffering.


Glenn said...

We both asked a great question. Humans seem to have a problem with letting God be God. It seems like we either disregard Him or try to dissect Him. We have hard time living with mystery. I think if God is God, He must be, to some degree, mysterious.

How do we get in sync with God? Watch for Him to reveal Himself however He chooses. Take risks for Him. Follow the unorthodox footsteps of Jesus, gravitating toward people in the margins of our culture.

I think that no matter how fancy we try to get in expressing this, it comes down to trust and obey... and keep our eyes (and hearts) open.

Sally said...

Love this post- the beach is very special to me- but you're right God is everywhere so everywhere is Holy!
(Dropped by from Smulo Space)-

The Creature said...

Glenn said:

Watch for Him to reveal Himself however He chooses. Take risks for Him. Follow the unorthodox footsteps of Jesus, gravitating toward people in the margins of our culture.

Amen bro! What more can be said!


The Creature said...

Hey Sally,

Thanks for dropping by. I love the beach too. I lived in the desert for a few years (love the desert as well) but the beach lured me back!

Hope to see round this way again.