The question struck me as I sojourned through Exodus at a Come Before Winter Renewal last month. Moses went barefoot at the burning bush.
What does holy ground feel like?
Was it rough gravel or fine sand? Were there rocks poking Moses’s instep? Cockleburs he had to pick off of his robe afterwards? Did sharp sticks leave any splinters? Was it sunburn hot or dessert night cold?
It wasn’t the quality of the ground that made it holy. It was the presence of the Living God in that moment.
I realize this applies to me, too. I stand on holy ground in the place of calling to ministry.
There are rocks: my pride. Have I mentioned that I like being able to do things well? I was fully functional back in the states. Here on the field after 5 years, I still struggle to do life at times. My Spanish is so-so, and my government office navigation skills are worse.
There are cockleburs: my desire to be valued. I want my efforts to be seen and appreciated. Who doesn’t, really? But approval is like manna, it tends to rot overnight. Most mornings send you out searching to fill your basket again. God is the only reliable source.
There is definitely a burn: comparison. When I measure myself or my contribution up against those around me, I always lose. It doesn’t matter what the score says. If you pay the ante, you forfeit your chips.
Holy ground is a one-on-one moment, face to face with the Lord. It’s my morning coffee over the Word, my prayer to want what he wants each day. It’s a worship song on my heart, a breath prayer to invite his presence to change me.
My toes are in the dirt. It’s humble. There is no other option but to need him here. He called us into the adventure of full dependency. Every day as I step out my front gate, every month when we open the financial statement.
He listens to my insecurities and excuses. Then he tells me who He is and what He will do. The staff may become a snake. The snake may reform as a staff. The hand may cycle whole, leprous, and healed again. He never changes.
I see his glory passing by in each child we pray healing into. I feel it shine in each team member we encourage out of their comfort zone sandals.
This is holy ground.
This is the place where freedom begins in me, and through me, in others.
Like Moses was, I am surrounded by everyday sheep—cooking, cleaning, discipling my children, homeschooling, loving, writing.
I can become distracted by all of the curly tails and wooly bottoms,
Or I can turn and focus on the burning bush calling me by name.
I choose the fire.
I accept the challenge to trust him and go higher up the mountain.
I’m kicking off my expectations of being perfect, and the trap of comparison.
I am going skin to skin with holiness, instead.
The Lord calls each of us to holy ground, wherever we are in our relationship with him. What does the spot you’re standing on feel like?