It used to be that church buildings were holy spaces. Sometimes they still are. But for many of us restless souls looking for more direction, truth and life, this question of what constitutes “holy space” transcends traditional religious symbols.
What makes a space “holy” or “set apart”? Does “holiness” have something to do with the history of a space or the story behind it? Or is a space sacred because it is where God has met us?
So Moses takes his shoes off when God appears to him in the form of a burning bush.
And Jacob piles up rocks at the very place where he has watched the heavens open up and wrestled with a divine stranger.
And the eunuch asks to be baptized because suddenly his soul’s deepest questions have received answers.
…Or, is a holy space where our wounds cry out for healing?
Or where our darkest secrets meet God’s unrelentingly loving gaze?
Or where we’ve found connection with another human being of the kind that could only be described as God-breathed?
I suspect many of us can recount at least one moment in their lives when they found themselves in a holy space. Something about that moment in time touched our souls and called out for us to remember it.
Photographer and writer Katie Archibald-Woodward has shared her visual word work at this intersection before. Starting tomorrow, Katie will share some photo meditations from her recent trip to The Holy Land. Every Tuesday and Thursday taking us into Advent (the season of preparation for the birth of Jesus) you’ll find a short meditation and picture from Katie. (You’ll be able to find more in-depth reflections from Katie at her blog.) We hope these will inspire your own meditations and that you’ll feel free to share your musings and memories with the rest of this motley gang of saints and sinners. Consider writing up your own reflections on what constitutes holy space for you, or sharing a time when you knew you were on holy ground and why. Leave your reflections in the comments section below or send them to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We hope you’ll stop by tomorrow to open up this wonderful series with us!