Well, I’ve lost my journal. It’s the one I took with me to Israel. I bought it thinking I’d have a ton of stuff to write about while I was there, but it turns out I only used about ten or fifteen pages. I just didn’t have the time I thought I’d have. For future reference for my next big adventure, whatever that ends up being, I think I’ll just bring something small with me to jot down notes and save the big writing for when I get home. We were on the move so much that I didn’t have time to really stop and write anything coherent and by the time we got back to the hotel and showered and had dinner, all I wanted to do was fall into the bed and sleep.
Anyhow, for a while after I got back, I didn’t write anything in this journal because it felt sacred somehow. Even though I’d written so little in it, I didn’t feel like anything I experienced here at home was worthy enough to be included in a journal that had been to Israel and back.
But I finally did let go of that notion a few months ago and started writing in it. And although it’s temporarily misplaced, I’m sure it will turn up eventually…at least I hope so, but for now, I don’t know where else to look. I’ve checked all around my house, my car, the few places I’ve been that I would have taken it with me, but to no avail.
I remember a time a few years ago that the same thing happened with my Bible. It went missing for about a week or two and I’d looked everywhere in the world I could think of and couldn’t find it anywhere. I finally gave up, my heart broken, because that Bible had years of notes and highlights and how do you replace all that?
I decided maybe this was God’s way of saying that I needed a fresh start, so I gave in and went out and bought a new Bible. Not long after, I ended up finding my old Bible in the laundry basket underneath all the socks that needed matching. How it got there, I don’t know, but I fully blame my husband since he cleans like a whirlwind without giving much thought to where he puts things when he’s “putting things away.”
Right now, I have a giant laundry pile in the corner of my bedroom that needs folding. It’s been there a week or so…okay so probably more on the “or so” side than the “a week” side. I’m hoping maybe I’ll find my journal there whenever I get around to the pile, although I really doubt it. I’m thinking the laundry has been there longer than the journal’s been missing, as sad as that is to admit. (I just hate laundry. I’d rather load and unload the dishwasher 20 times than fold and put away a load of laundry.)
I’ve been reading Searching for Sunday, by Rachel Held Evans and she talks in one part about how this guy once told her that after searching around different churches, he realized that because the Spirit lives within us, any place can be a sanctuary. In a way it made me think of my missing journal.
I was waiting for something holy or sacred to write in that journal. I was expecting it to have to be something big and important to be worthy to fill those pages. But what I didn’t consider is that the day-to-day can be just a sacred as Sunday morning church. Because ultimately nothing that I or anyone else does makes us holy. It is the Spirit of God living on the inside of us that does that. God’s holiness is what makes moments and spaces sacred. And because He goes with me wherever I go, I can find sacred moments and spaces most anywhere at most anytime. I just have to, as Rachel says, “Pay attention.”
In the meantime, I’ll get a notebook to jot my thoughts in, but I have hope that eventually I’ll find the missing journal and continue to fill it with the big and small sacred things.