God Is Waiting There
I know a place
where God dwells, the heart whispers.
Let us go there.
Why, God is
everywhere, the head replies. There is
no place where God is not.
Yes, says the heart, but there are thin places
where earth and heaven touch.
God is waiting for us there.
Some places are sacred to me: my friend’s cabin on Bowen Island, Battleship Islands on Garibaldi Lake, and Black Sage Road that weaves through the vineyards between Oliver and Osoyoos. Each place evokes a visceral memory of an encounter with God. These experiences were so profound that my body remembers them with a flutter of awe whenever I imagine myself there.
“A favourite place of mine is a particular trail and beach on Vancouver Island near Tofino,” writes Mike Stewart, an Anglican priest. “Every time I visit the area, I am touched again by God’s friendship. Once when I was staying with friends there, I had a sudden desire to visit the trail and beach. In my heart I knew Jesus was waiting for me to get there. As I walked the beach alone, I heard him speaking to me in the ocean wind, ‘I will always be your friend.’ ‘Lord,’ I replied, ‘And I yours.'”
How lovely is your dwelling place,
O Lord of hosts!
My soul longs, indeed it faints
for the courts of the Lord;
my heart and my flesh sing for joy
to the living God.
Even the sparrow finds a home,
and the swallow a nest for herself,
where she may lay her young,
at your altars, O Lord of hosts,
my King and my God.
Happy are those who live in your house,
ever singing your praise.
– Psalm 84:1-4 (NRSV)