When you come into contact with the Holy, there can be no barrier between you and the earth on which you stand, the earth which God created and called good, holy. All ground is the ground God made, and all ground is holy to God. We must take off our shoes for it is only here that we can encounter God. God calls us to take the holy and expand the holy into our own life, into the life of our home, and into the life of our community and world. The barriers we have erected between ourselves and the holy are artificial. We can encounter and experience God’s presence everywhere if we attune ourselves to be aware.
The heavens proclaim the glory of God and the earth is God’s handiwork.
What barriers have we erected between God and ourselves? Do we have obsolete concepts that separate us from God?
Take off your sandals, for you are standing on holy ground.
Tread softly! All the earth is holy ground.
Nothing is insignificant, and everything worthy of respect and care. Nothing is second-class. What God has made is of value.
The challenge of the saints of the twenty-first century is to begin again to comprehend the sacred in the ten thousand things of our world; to reverence what we have come to view as ordinary and devoid of spirit.
Let everything you touch be treated as if it were as precious as the altar vessels. Whenever you handle any equipment or any person, be reverent. Be full of care with everything entrusted to you. Everything you touch or see, everyone for whom you have responsibility, is to be viewed as something cherished by God, and thus to be cherished by you.
Earth’s crammed with heaven,
And every common bush afire with God;
But only he who sees, takes off his shoes,
The rest sit round it and pluck blackberries,
And daub their natural faces unaware…
Elizabeth Barrett Browning