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The Sanctuary


I so want to seize this present moment of life, squeezing out every ounce of learning, exploring every emotion that surfaces in my aging frame, overcoming all threats to the true richness of maturity.

Each morning, my heart yearns for the next phase of life, crying out for a deeper experience with eternity, while preparing for a richer contribution in the now. I am so done with the past and yet so aware of the privilege of my journey to this point. The people in my life are so precious, so diverse, each treasured for their unique contribution to my journey. I owe such debt to so many.

It seems I love people too much at times, if at all possible; and yet, the search for and the sharing of truth, I love so much more. That is an emotionally volatile combination that demands both courage and humility, simultaneous with resilience. Truth is one of those words like faith, that is risky to use; languaged so differently by each individual, yet personal and precious, so much so that we are often hesitant to share. However, it is in the sharing of perceived truth that real relationship is crafted, and truth more so understood. With the toil of dialogue comes authentic appreciation, which if pursued and nurtured, germinates into a deep love and respect, treasured equally regardless of one’s belief system.

It seems I am ever learning from the language of our yearnings, the observation of the mechanics of religious practice, each different and unique but certainly common to each person. Whether atheist or fundamentalist, we all wrestle each morning with the hope in our hearts.

For me this wrestling always drives me to the one text that has endured my forty years of struggle between my powerful self and my gentle spirit. How can both preside in the same frame?

The phrase that captured my thought this morning was from Hebrews 8:1-2: “We do have such a high priest, who sat down at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in heaven, and who serves in the sanctuary, the true tabernacle set up by the Lord, not by man.”

Is there a sanctuary, a place of tabernacle, so close among us that its draw is literally felt by our physical bodies. Is this the source of our religions? Our bodies, like some crystal, resonate with that draw, manifesting what we call hope? Is that draw a presence from an actual being, so awesome that all humanity resonates, though each may language differently, given the context of their religious environment?

Did that presence at some point come and dwell among us, so impacting the globe that we still struggle with the Name. Is that One now alive and like the high priests and prophets within our own earthly religions, those to whom we ascribe loyalty in return for the care taking of our particular religious bents, is presently laboring to connect with our hearts, while we daily struggle with our lives. Is that what love is?

Is there a “place” of sanctuary unlike the bricks and stones we stack toward heaven, a tabernacle that is both a person and a friend, calling us to cease from our doing and simply be present?

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