It’s a crisis of at least national, if not international, scope. I’m expecting my phone to go on Amber Alert any moment now to secure the support of all cell phone users in southern California in finding what has been lost, or worse yet, abducted. I woke up this morning and so far have been unable to locate an essential part of my morning ritual, my Ugg boots. Now I know this sounds like overkill, but I’m sure you have some trivial item that has become such a necessary part of your life, that to miss it would throw an imbalance into your emotional make-up like a washing machine knocking on its spin cycle.
And before you call me nuts, I wish to draw your attention to C. S. Lewis, who, in The Four Loves, wrote of our affection for inanimate things that become an important part of our daily existence — even sounds, like that of a screen door slamming, or the tail of the dog slapping on the hardwood floor. I wouldn’t be surprised that for Lewis to not be able to locate his slippers, robe or pipe might have had a similar unsettling nature to it. And just so I don’t feel completely like a mental case, perhaps you could let me know what part of your physical universe would throw you off balance to lose. Take my morning coffee away and I might not even be able to think, especially if I still hadn’t found my boots.
And then something happened to put it in perspective. A text from our friends, Jeff and Kelly, who are off the street now and in a new apartment assisted by us and a foundation, but Jeff is struggling with his emotions over the landlord of their former apartment who is refusing to refund their deposit and accusing them of breaking things they did not break. So Jeff let me know, at 4:30 in the morning, that he was getting on a bus just to ride around and cool off his emotions after being unable to sleep over his anger. It was everything he could do to keep from finding that landlord and inflicting physical harm on him — something he would have easily done earlier in his life, and part of what has gotten him in trouble in the past. He was counting on that return money to help care for his wife’s health needs. We were able to send him some money (thanks to you) and remind him that vengeance belongs to God, and He would do a much better job of bringing justice to this man than Jeff would. Jeff was grateful.
Suddenly my boots were not such a big deal. Still haven’t found them, though, and if I still haven’t by tomorrow, it might have to be a big deal all over again.