Continue to live your lives in [Christ Jesus], rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.
— Colossians 2:6-7

At this time of year, the apple trees in our yard are barren and seemingly have no life in them. They stand frozen, offer­ing little more than a bit of shelter for the birds that land on their branches. I think ahead to when the first pink blossoms will appear in spring—and the fruit that will follow. It’s wonderful, though, that even as I pass judgment on the trees in winter, there is still life inside.
Maybe you have read (or heard of) the book by Brother Lawrence called The Practice of the Presence of God. Don’t let the size of the book fool you. Though small in its number of pages, it is rich in wisdom.
Brother Lawrence, a friar who is one of my heroes, came to realize that wherever he was, it was a good place to connect with God, for God is everywhere. Because of God’s presence, even places where Lawrence had felt empty and worthless became rich with a sense of belonging. His place in the monastery where he lived was the kitchen. There he learned to cook meals, do dishes, and run errands with God. What seemed a lowly position to others became a retreat and a haven of relationship with God. The kitchen became Lawrence’s sanctuary, where he worshiped in spirit and in truth.
Where is your sanctuary?

Dear God, remind us that you are with us everywhere and are worthy of our worship. Thank you for including us in your plans for the day. Amen.

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