The Geography of Spirituality

BY Doug Jones

January 3, 2013




At the holidays, many of us take to the highways or the skies to make trips back “home.” For many years, this was part of our family’s routine; making trips from where we were living to either my wife’s home or back to my family home. Interesting that we talk about going home.

Many of us live and work many miles from where we grew up. The place where we came of age and spent our developmental years is the space we often think of when we hear the word home.

Something has occurred in my life (maybe it is a matter of age, but I don’t think so) that has us staying put since our family moved to a small farm in western Pennsylvania; we feel like we are home. Where we live, work, and play has become our homeland. There is no longing to keep moving, to make our way back “home;” we have found where we belong.

As I have reflected on what has contributed to this change—this sense of home and feeling of belonging—I have sketched the following thoughts:

  1. Sacred space: Our home has provided a place for me to find quiet, solitude, and space to be with myself, my family, and God.
  2. Sacred place: Our property has helped situate us in a community among people, amidst creation, and in a geographic location where we feel we truly belong.
  3. Sacred ground: Our current calling and location offer a stability that helps us stay put and see it through, with no option to move on or engage the ejection seat. Here we are being formed by the routine and regularity of our familiar surroundings.

We have found that our current geography helps shape us into who God has made us.

“on earth as it is in heaven.”

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