For twenty three years, I've aligned with a Protestant theology-- at first Baptist, then Community Church, then Reformed Church of America. I love the priority of intellectual thought and discussion around Scripture, even among laypeople. I respect the carefulness of deciphering tradition and being willing to let go of those that shift focus off of Christ. And, I truly believe in a living and active Word that has been continuously present in the services I attend.
My faith has grown exponentially within the bounds of a Protestant theology. I believe the Protesting Act of Luther to be good, ordained, needed at the time. And for now, I will continue to worship in a Protestant vein, in a church that I believe is my home.
What I have a hard time with most every setting I've been in, having first grown faith roots in the very first manifestation of the Church--Orthodoxy--is the focus away from sacred on the external, and concentrating wholly on the internal sacredness. The latter is a commendable focus. No doubt, the ideal focus. But, I will be honest that I miss the solemnity of an altar that is holy, a church space that is only for worshipping and revering a Holy God, and the chance to touch, smell, and taste what belongs to God alone--the special use of the senses that is not found anywhere else but in the Sacred place (external).
I am in an internal place right now, where I feel like I need to chat with God on a very serious level. I feel like I need to enter some sort of sacred place that's not dependent on my ability to internally bow down. Maybe it's Pandemic fatigue, but something seems amiss if the church is only a body of believers making decisions and turning this way and that to understand the next thing. I just want a physical church. A sacred place. A sanctuary to step away from the world...even away from myself.
Is there anything sacred in my life anymore?
I feel like whatever was left inside me, has been drowned out by the next issue, the next interpretation, the next voice that motivates a body that is not a building.
I just want a building.
And I want a Holy Place that is for God alone, that I have the privilege to enter as His daughter. Not my living room, not the multipurpose room, not the classroom. But a Holy Place--untarnished by decisions of the times. A Holy Place that is apart from our world. Not crafted once, spruced up, and then refurbished by the next new trend.
I guess, I want to go back to those Orthodoxy roots just for a day. And sit and pray and listen and taste and smell and know God in that very sacred quiet, where nothing changes, because if it's sacred, there's nothing better.