Tuesday, June 3, 2014

A Keychain, Two Keys, and The Truth

Life in many ways is more simple today than it has been in a long time.

Take, for example, my keychain:

For years, I had more keys than I knew what to do with. Keys to multiple properties, work spaces, cars, lockers, you name it. And I had a section of a drawer full of keys I had forgotten about.

Lots of keys.

Lots of keys represent a complicated life - lots of doors to open, places to be, obligations to meet, headaches to deal with.

Now, my keychain consists of our house key and the key to my beloved, ten-year old Jeep.

(I do have a swipecard to one of my workplaces, but I am not sure where that is now, because I don't carry a wallet anymore - I have an iPhone holder that holds my phone, driver's license and a debit card and I reckon that's about all I need on any given day).

In 1 Thessalonians 4:11, Paul wrote: "Make it your goal to live a quiet life".

For me, a quiet life involves fewer keys.

I don't have a monastic temperament, or the leanings of an self-denier. I have a mortgage, two cars (one of these days I will get around to getting a key to Miranda's car) and several professional organizations I serve to earn my living and a lot of deadlines that are particularly pressing this month. I also have five kids, ranging in age from 18 to 8 months. Life is not easy, necessarily.

But life is increasingly quiet. Less about striving, or making an impression, or issuing grand pronouncements.

This does not come easily to me. I thrive - historically - on unpredictability, chaos, the next challenge, the next impassable mountain. And striving.

I also have high blood pressure and occasional, serious depression. I can't sustain life the way I am 'wired' to (or, better, have 'wired' myself).

I need to find more quiet.

For me, that is represented by one keychain, two keys, and the truth.

What is a quiet life for you?

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