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Friday, April 8, 2011

Sanctuary Within

"Sometimes I wanna go, where everybody knows my name".  Everyone remembers the theme song from the hit television series, "Cheers".  Right now you are probably at least humming this tune in your head, possibly singing it out loud.  Sometimes that is where I want to be. I want to be in the presence of my friends and family to laugh and to hear about their lives.

On a hectic day when my job is overwhelming and I am mentally exhausted I need a refuge.  I need a place where maybe nobody knows my name.  I need to be alone.  On days like this I will often drive to my church to play the piano in a dark sanctuary where nobody but me hears my prayers.  I begin to play whatever comes to mind.  Most of the time it is music that just flows from within, to my hands on the keys.  It resonates from the strings what my pastor referred to once as, "piano prayers".  I had never really thought of it that way before.  But when I think about the emotions that are welling up inside during this time, it can only be prayers.  The feeling is overwhelming and somehow, some way I know that God hears those prayers and meets me there. But I believe that God is meeting me in a much deeper place than the physical building.  He is meeting me in the sanctuary within.  

I suppose someone reading this is wishing they had access to a church sanctuary, while another is thinking I wish I could play piano.  Can you sit outside, or go for a walk?  Can you retreat to a room that isn't occupied by others?  Can you simply shut your eyes for a few minutes to listen to that still small voice?  If you can do any of this, you have found your sanctuary; your sacred place. When words can't express what you are feeling inside, and yet somehow you feel as though you've been heard, you have found that special place.  

Within you lies a longing, a prayer that has no words.  That prayer can be found if you are willing to meet God in your sanctuary, in the deepest part of your soul.  I know he will hear you and I know he will bring you peace, if just for a moment.

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