“Do you not know that you yourselves are God’s [sanctuary] and that God’s Spirit dwells in you?” 1 Corinthians 3:16
Yesterday I walked at length in a park and wilderness area known as Horn Pond. It is a place away from it all, even though it is adjacent to a municipal power station and not far from a mall. Wanting to escape, I left its crowded parking lot and followed along a paved road to a system of dirt trails that bordered smaller ponds and a marsh area.
Once on the trail itself, I stopped mid-way and closed my eyes. Here the path overlooked a marsh filled with reeds. Hearing the intoxicating song of birds, I felt the breeze on my cheek. Breathing slowed. Muscles relaxed. I had arrived.
I had discovered a outdoor sanctuary. But it was in the unlikeliest of places.
In scripture, our bodies too are regarded as being the temples or sanctuaries of the Holy Spirit. For that matter, this also applies to the mass of humanity across the regional, ethnic, cultural and political spectrum. An outrageous claim when you think about it.
But what if God actually deems our bodies as places of wondrous and holy habitation, as temples and sanctuaries? What if the divine indwelling is a manifestation of God’s grace and yearning to be (dare I say it?) in union with us? What if this profound and intimate encounter with God is the agent that finally changes us?