I Can't Find My Keys
(An Exercise in Contemplation)
It was a fitful night of sleep (again), punctuated by a needy dog pleading to go outside at 4:45 AM (and again at 5:15). The back of my eyes ached when my alarm went a few hours later. Alas, I had to get up so I could get Zachary to the bus stop on time. I begrudgingly rolled out of bed and tried to muster up the energy to get dressed and get him out the door on time.
Where are my keys?
Asking this question to myself is part of my morning routine. I respond by patting down my pockets and quickly searching my typical drop-off points from the night before. I know I should just hang them up on the hook where keys go, but I don’t… and my method usually works fine. Not this morning. I looked in and under things. I dug through pockets and bookbags and the pillows of the couch.
Where are my keys?
I searched for 20 minutes. Thankfully Michelle took the day off today and arrived home from dropping Marin off at school just in time to get Zachary where he needed to be while I stayed home and searched. Finally, I shoved my hands in the front pocket of the hoodie I’m wearing and heard a jingle as my hands cupped the familiar shape of my keys. They didn’t mysteriously appear out of thin air. They had been with me all along.
7 O Israel, hope in the Lord!
For with the Lord there is steadfast love,
and with him is great power to redeem.
The location of my keys didn’t change. They were “steadfast” there in my pocket.
The love of God is always present. The love of God is unfailing. The love of God is steadfast. I don’t always see it or feel it. I’m not always aware of it or perceive it. But even then, God has not run off to hide in some illogical and out-of-reach place. God remains present. Steadfast. Consistent in an otherwise chaotic world.
Every day the challenge for me is to become (and remain) awake and aware of the LOVE (God) who is eternally present. This love always has been and always will be, “For with the Lord there is steadfast love.” This is the focus of my contemplative life and practice: The ongoing pursuit of becoming awake and aware of the eternal presence of LOVE.
This is where my hope remains.
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