Retracing Steps

So I did a thing the other day. I lost my wedding band. Yes, one of those things.

The frustrating reality was that although I knew where I had lost my wedding band I was unable to find it, no matter how hard I searched. Let me walk you through how things happened – yes, I was in the room when it happened.

I normally don’t pick Lilah up from school on Tuesdays but I did this past Tuesday due to her Nana being out of town. After I picked her up we ran by her Papa and Nana’s to feed and water her and Papa’s chickens. By the time we got home it was close to 3 and I was starving. I had worked through lunch because Lilah had to be at dance at 4 and there were some things I wanted to get done before heading out of town the next day myself.

After eating quickly, I decided to take a 15-minute nap. The 11-month old is teething again and in general he just has an aversion to my sleeping through the night. The night before had been a humdinger and included walks around the living room and swinging on the tree swing in the front yard at 3:30am. By the way, if you see me on the tree swing between the hours of midnight and 5am; it’s not me with insomnia.

Due to my tiredness I hit the snooze on my 15-minute nap and ended up having to rush out of the house to get her to dance on time. It is at this point that my ring was lost although I did not realize this until several hours later. You see, I had a blister on my ring finger that had been aggravating me and I had taken off my ring to aggravate the blister back while I napped.

When I realized later that evening that I did not have my ring on I immediately began the process of retracing my steps. I knew I was on the couch, but the ring was nowhere to be found. I turned that end of the couch upside down and still no ring. Then I looked in the kitchen, and then where my keys had been placed, and ultimately in my vehicle. Still no ring.

This was frustrating. Not only was I missing my ring, but I knew exactly where I had left it and yet it still wasn’t found. I went to bed with this on my mind and thankfully the 11-month old limited his interruption to one bottle-filled moment at about 2:30.

When my feet hit the floor in the morning I knew immediately where my ring was. I walked into the living room, picked up the blanket that was on the opposite end of the couch, and shook it out – the ring tumbled to the floor. In all of my work in retracing my steps I had failed to allow for the fact that the ring had fallen into the blanket, which in my hurry to leave, I had tossed to the opposite end of the couch.

Have you ever done something similar? Have you ever spent time retracing your steps and trying to figure out where you misplaced something only to find yourself missing out on a simple step? That simple step, once noticed, made all the difference in the world in rectifying the problem.

In Psalm 16:2 David says,

I say to the Lord, “You are my Lord;
apart from you I have no good thing.”

Maybe you’re a little like I find myself sometimes; frustrated, irritable, discouraged, cynical, and overall just missing an ingredient of care and compassion when it comes to your interactions and moments with others. You may have even retraced your steps multiple times to find where you’ve dropped this care for others. Let’s begin with our relationship with God.

Talk to him. Tell him your realities. Tell him your confessions. Tell him your discouragements. Oftentimes I find that my treatment of others goes awry when I fail to connect with my Heavenly Father and I jump around serving self in a way that causes loss and confusion.

Published by Daniel M Harding

Husband, father, associate pastor.

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