Melk Abbey Austria ©
Once we travelled the rails and snaked our way high into the Swiss Alps to Andermatt. On our way back to the station we found a small church with huge wooden doors. Together my husband and I sat in the holy hush of candle light; surrounded by murals and sculptures from another time. I imagined the workers who built this haven so high on the rocky peaks.
I have walked cobbled stoned paths in Israel, Austria, Germany and Pompeii. I've bathed in light that danced its way through a million stained shards of glass, and rested in the splendor of places with domes covered in gold. I've watched the tourists with their careless cameras disrupt the faithful few. And listened to the walls hoping to hear the prayers of a thousand years. I eavesdropped once, though the language I did not know, to the prayer of one broken heart. Once I found an empty space, and risked singing an anthem of praise just to hear it echo off the ancient stones. When the tour ended, I filed out in hallowed silence, though my heart hungered for more.
But there's a faraway place that I hold so dear. A place that fills my heart with unspeakable delight. It has been the most magnificent cathedral of all. The artistry and worship were more than my senses could bare. No murals crowded my view of the sky, the walls were mud, but draped in vibrant cloth. I hold this place close to my heart, and think of it when the difficult days come (and trust me they do).
The rhythm of their praise still echoes in my ear -- These were the songs of joy Christ must have heard as he endured the cross. Every tribe and tongue singing praises to their King. -- I remember that place and the sounds of their song.
I remember their smiles and the way the children danced. The dust covered faces and ragged clothes. Nowhere near were there domes of gold.
"Blessed are the poor in Spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of God" Matthew 5:3