It can’t be separated, sifted, sorted, or sectioned off – the holy from the rest – because all of everything that breathes and moves and lives on this rock spinning in space was created by Holiness Himself.
All the world is holy ground and every birdsong a hymn of praise to the Divine.
But that doesn’t stop us from trying.
We bow the head low in Church, best behavior worn like it’s something we’re on permanent, and don’t forget to put a smile on your face no matter how badly you scolded that child who wouldn’t get in the car the first five times you asked this morning.
Yeah, because Church is holy and the kitchen isn’t.
Only here’s the thing: it is.
The sacred can’t be partitioned off. Someplace that you visit on Sundays when you don’t have much else to do. All the world is sacred space, and every day we walk on holy ground.
The hands that serve in the kitchen are no less holy than the hands that serve at the altar, because the service itself is where the sacred is.
Worship can happen in a pew or on a plane, because it isn’t about the place.
It’s never about the place of prayer, only about the heart of it.
My grandfather taught me this at his funeral. When his son-in-law, uncle of mine, spoke the words of remembrance and I really never knew that my grandpa (who’d never, that I’d seen anyway, crossed a Church threshold) found God in the quiet and beauty of the woods. But that’s what my uncle said he’d told him. That out there, in the quiet of the forest, he found God.
You can know a person and never know them.
He was a hunter, my grandfather. I’m not sure how much he ever caught or shot or trapped, but I do know that he wasn’t a trophy hunter. Back when his kids were still kids, he’d go off for a weekend and bring home whatever he got, if he got anything, and my grandma would do whatever she had to do to put it on the table. But this was long before I was on the scene. Long before I would visit and stay over for a weekend or a night. So I never saw any of that. I knew about it, of course, in the way that you know that when your mom was younger she was on the tennis team and your dad rode a motorcycle, but it wasn’t something that you ever saw.
Until someone stands up to try to wrap words around a life that’s done and you see what you never saw.
All the earth is hallowed ground.
The sacred dance of light in the trees, divine beauty of forest floor, whisper of holy breath moving a branch. All these, yes, all these are sacred space. A cathedral standing right there among the trees and the leaf mold.
Cathedrals often don’t look like it.
Kitchen cathedrals especially.
The dishes can be piled high in sink, on countertops, anywhere but where they need to be. You can walk on crumbs and the dust bunnies can be multiplying right beneath your nose, but this space too can be holy. Fill it with love and laughter or fill it with prayers for help.
Wherever there’s a heart in need of healing or a soul in need of peace, He is.
And wherever He is, is holy ground.
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