Seeking Treasure

Sometimes I feel out of place. Sometimes I feel flat and emaciated. Sometimes my spirit just feels sprawled out across the garage floor like an old, dusty kite.

Thin. Mangled. And not very fun.

Not long ago I opened the garage door and saw one lying on the floor like a corpse. My boys had evidently knocked the kite down from a tall shelf. The mess was another frustrating reminder that all things lead to chaos when two preschoolers are gumshoeing about the house.

They’re messing up to something, always.

Still, compared to their previous attempts at dismantling our house, this wasn’t a big deal. This didn’t require a plumber, an electrician or even a time out. Today, though, my shoulders felt sore from the steely weight of big and small responsibilities — to the point where even one small mess could tip the scales with heavy gravity.

And the scales did tip, once I discovered another mess on yet another floor. When my shoes landed on the kite, the plastic paper crinkled all the way up my spine — like another unwanted metaphor.

Really, it was the sound of something pointing back at me.

About a year ago, I had pulled that brand new kite out of the trunk to the delight of two leaping toddlers. My wife and I had been hiding it there, waiting for a perfect family moment.

At last, one evening we decided to make an impromptu stop after finishing an errand. Though dusk had arrived at the quiet park before us, we still had time. We found our moment.

And I swooned. As the kite circled and roared over my head, I must have chortled louder than any child in heaven.

I felt as though someone had finally loosened my boots after years of being bolted to the floorboards. Suddenly, I was outside — and my spirit was running.

But does the movement always have to come to a full stop?

Because now I saw myself standing in a dimly lit garage, eyeing an unmoving and tired kite. Something was missing. And I didn’t know how to get it back.

While I meditated in the doorway, I felt like an old man looking at old pictures. Was life really just an ongoing descent into chaos and disorder? Was there any hope that this kind of unbridled joy could ever rise up and bolt in new directions again?

Or is that brand of joy just a breezy, fickle fancy?

Because I want to believe that joy still reigns and moves us along, with its strong gusts of freedom, into a soaring and wildly looping surrender. I want to believe that joy still carries us into uncharted dimensions of holy, childlike chortling.

Again and again.

Finally, my answer blew through the doorway: Sometimes faith is the quiet work of extricating a kite from its own string, getting it out of the garage — and waiting. But it’s more like the waiting of a child who will scavenge for joy in the face of anything.

Because to a child, both windy skies and dusty floors promise a treasure.

Again and again.

9 thoughts on “Seeking Treasure

  1. This is so rich. I could quote so many lines that speak to my heart, but this one especially resonates with me because I spoke on the concept today: Because to a child, both windy skies and dusty floors promise a treasure.

    In my class, the central message was that God always gives us abundance for today. Sometimes we don’t recognize it, sometimes we don’t appreciate it, sometimes it looks different than we expected, but it is always there.

    Perhaps, we too, can find that abundance in windy skies and dusty floors.

    • With eyes like a child’s, and with faith like a child’s, we will find our abundance. We may be coughing through dust or chortling through wind, but we will find it.

      Thank you for leaving your comment, Jen. Be well with His Presence. As you say, “it is always there.”

  2. Another perspective of God is that He is always with us. He is always working for our best, whether we are in the air or on the dusty floor. It may not always feel like it but He IS ALWAYS with us. As you said in another post, people matter.

  3. God”s perspective is that we have infinite value. The kite on the floor only has value if someone values it enough to work with it or care for it. Even if thrown in the trash by someone who doesn’t value it, it may have had value to another person who would not have thrown it out. Either way, it always has potential. But it will always hold a glorious value to you because you value it’s memory and potential. The kite served it’s purpose on the day it flew and again when you saw it on the dusty floor. Who knows? Someday it may be repurposed, upcycled or recycled. Or maybe it will fly again.

    • Good point. Our relationships do make the difference. Regardless of the state of the kite or even of our own happiness, we have an opportunity “to work with it” and “care for it.” Thanks for sharing that perspective.

      Obedience always has a multi-dimensional purpose — even if we cannot see or understand its present value,

  4. Interesting about the kite – built for the open sky and wind yet spends 99% of it’s time in the garage. But given the opportunity to once again return to it’s element – it immediately rises to the invitation.

    • Very interesting perspective, Gary. Very. I like it, too, because it isn’t neat and tidy. For example, is it good or spiritually noble to think of something in a dark garage for most of its life, waiting for its invitation to adventure? Is that depressing? And even if it’s good, do I really want to live my life like that? That doesn’t sound too glorious and inspiring.

      Maybe our perspective is just grounded in an entirely different dimension than God’s. In other words, if He is looking down on us from heaven (I know that’s a simplistic picture, but let’s just go with it, okay?), then a kite would almost look the same to Him — regardless of whether it was lying on the ground, or flying in the sky. It would look flat either way.

      Like looking down at a plane, from the space shuttle — that plane could look like it was just floating over water. Perspective matters.

      Maybe God is interested in something else.

  5. Thank you, Jeanne. I know there’s a bit of sadness in this post because no one wants to feel like a flat kite on a garage floor. But we all fall to the ground like that every now and then. But I’m thankful you saw the good in it. There is something beautiful about the perspective of a child — when he or she maintains the faith to find goodness and joy all around them. I could have walked into that same garage with a different perspective and found a treasure instead of a problem. Yes, maybe there are problems lying about our feet, but that doesn’t mean we can’t dig a little deeper to find treasure. Thanks for your comment.

  6. This is a beautiful comment. thank you s much for the inspiring words. Our faith is confusing sometimes but f we keep it we will succed in all we do.
    Blessings, Jeanne.

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