I misplace things.
I hesitate to say they are lost because I know that I had them in my hands and know that I didn’t want to lose them, so I put them in places that I think I will remember, but I don’t. Someone will walk up to me while I am busy talking to others and they hand me an envelope and turn and walk away. Knowing how, as Robert Frost said, “way leads on to way and doubtful that I should ever come back,” I slip the envelope in a pocket thinking I will empty those pockets when I get home, but many times I put the jacket back on a few days or weeks later and there is an envelope in the pocket that just says, “Thank you, from your friend,” and there is no signature of ownership, and I have no clue who handed me the envelope. So now I look ungrateful for the $50 gift card inside because I don’t know whom to thank. I misplace things.
I walk in to a friends house and there are fifty people there for a party, so knowing that I don’t like to carry my keys around I usually put them somewhere so I can retrieve them when it is time to leave, but I learned the hard way that you have to put them up high and out-of-sight or people will move them trying to “help” me. Later I return where they were left and they are not anywhere to be seen. I learned to go to the mantle by the fireplace or to the refrigerator and put my keys on top so I’ll know where they are when it comes time to leave, and when they are up high and away from prying fingers and eyes they are safer. The thought process behind high altitude placement of valuables is simple – if you are small you may not know proper value, so the most valuable things are “put up” so they don’t get lost or broken.
The Lord has never misplaced anything, but He does put the most valuable things on shelves so high that I cannot reach them. Like my dad. Too valuable to be left on earth, God took him higher and he is placed exactly where God needed him to be. I still feel lost though. It feels like I have misplaced something again, but this time God is the one who moved my valuable belonging. Even though I stand sometimes patting my pockets looking bewildered saying, “Where is he? I wanted him to see what we are doing, and what my kids are doing, and what the church is doing,” the Lord decided to put my greatest ally and advocate in a safe place.
If you feel like you have misplaced something… or that amazing “someone”… if you get on your tiptoes, and crane your neck back as far as you can, you can occasionally get a glimpse of the top shelf where the valuable things are placed… like Franklin Jones and David Hennigan. I can’t reach them, but they are safe. And let’s face it… you only protect valuable things.
Happy birthday, Jeff.