New program at Harbor Church

Finding the holy in the ordinary

Fri, 12/06/2019 - 9:30am

What do the Glass Orb Project, counting seals, birdwatching, and our search for spiritual significance in life have in common?

Perhaps more than we might think.

Emmanuel is one of the names we use for God at this time of year — it means God-with-us. It conveys the sense of a divine presence everywhere and anywhere. How we experience this reality is as individual as each of us are from each other. This is the idea that we will be developing all month in this Advent column and through a holiday discussion forum and video series offered by Harbor Church.

Each week we will examine a different facet of this simple question: How and where do I experience God, or the divine, in my daily life?

In this exploration of the spirit, we will share thoughts about things like discovering the divine in the outdoors, searching out the sacred in the ordinary, exploring the eternal in the everyday, and looking for life connections in the community. This week, let’s think about sacred spaces or holy places in our lives.

The words holy or sacred can be understood most simply as something that is set apart in a special way. It can be any thing, any place, any one. Where are your holy places that hold special meaning or provide significant moments in your life? Maybe it’s at Sandy Point, where the currents meet and the seals gather, or in Rodman’s Hollow while you are birdwatching, or when you are walking your dog on the beach, or as you take photos to capture these moments on the Greenways. What are some of your favorite places to experience God or to express your spirituality? What is it about these particular places that makes them special? What makes them important to you? How does your experience in these sacred spaces enhance your life and the lives of others? How do you share them with others? What activities do you engage in to care for these spaces?

The time we spend in these sacred spaces can ultimately have a profound effect on the way we live our lives each day.

I hope that the reflections in the column and the ideas shared here can be a Harbor Church holiday gift to you. If you would like to explore these ideas further, you can watch the You Tube videos posted each week: Just search there for “God Sightings on Block Island.” You can also participate in the weekly discussion group from 9 to 10:30 a.m. each Saturday morning in the parlor of Harbor Church from now until Christmas. It is my sincere hope that these reflections and discussions will enrich the holiday season for us all.Happy Holidays!

Peter Preiser is the pastor of Harbor Church.