I’ll Always Be a Loser, but I’ll Never Be Lost

I know all the words to Michael Jackson’s Thriller and can tell you stories from when I was four years old, but I have no idea where my keys are…pretty much ever.

There’s something that just does not connect.

I have tried the whole key bowl thing–where you always put your keys in the same place (preferably an attractive and distinctive bowl) so that you always know where they are. It doesn’t work. At least not for me.

It wouldn’t work in any location for me, but especially not at my church. My most recent church was founded and built in 1898 and was added on to in the 20s, 30s and 50s. There are a bajillion doors–that need keys to open them. When I started, you needed about ten different keys to open all of them, but we did eventually get it whittled down to four…or was it five? So walking around the church means having my keys with me. And that means laying them down when I’m thinking about 12 different things, none of which are where I am putting my keys.

It became kind of a right of passage. You weren’t a real member of the church until you helped the pastor find her keys. Only one time (that I remember) were they in the church freezer. They were found outdoors a couple of times. The balcony where the projector sat was a popular hangout for my keyring.

The truth is that I’m just a big loser…of keys, glasses, papers, wallets, credit cards, you name it.  I have become so accustomed to losing things, I forget that the loss of things create a real crisis for a lot of people.

I was unintentionally pretty horrible to our young nursery worker who had her wallet taken from her purse after leaving it in the nursery to come in to the sanctuary to visit with people. It’s the only time something like that happened the whole time I was at the church (other things were stolen, but this was the only wallet incident.)  She was freaking out, almost hysterical about the whole thing. She didn’t have much cash, and I know it’s a pain in the ass to replace a driver’s license and credit cards, but it’s not a crisis. I was sorry that it had happened, but I thought she was really overreacting. Turns out she didn’t realize that the thieves couldn’t use her bank card without her pin at the ATM or that if any charges were made on the credit cards before she cancelled them, she could dispute them and not be responsible. I have lost a wallet or had it stolen (once on an airplane) so many times that I’ve got the process down and can get everything replaced and re-ordered pretty quickly.  I forget that not everyone is a disaster and such things are traumatic.

I hate to think of the amount of living I have lost looking for things. No telling how often I’ve been late or just skipped something all together because I couldn’t find keys, shoes or something else I needed.

I used to really beat myself up over it. Why can’t I just pull it together and have a more organized, more found than lost life? But I gave that up a few years ago. I’ve tried all the tricks, read the books, employed techniques, but it hasn’t helped. Now I just embrace (ok, maybe just accept) that I am just a big loser. Losing things and having to find them is part of my lot in life.

I take great comfort in the knowledge that no matter how many times I lose things or how many things I lose, I am never lost. I get to exist in a state of being found, by a God who loves me and will never let me stay lost.

 Note: I was finally gifted with a Tile for my keys (which has been life changing), but as I cannot Tile my life, I remain a loser. 

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