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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Valley (08/10/06)

TITLE: Help! I Live in the Valley of Lost Coffee Cups
By Billie Buckley


Help! I Live in the Valley of Lost Coffee Cups

What are you always looking for at your house? When Son No.1 and Son No.2 were growing up, we searched daily for wallets and car keys. Come to think about it, Son No.2, who has finished law school and the seminary, is getting close to becoming Dr. Son No.2…and he is still looking for his keys!

Most days, at our house on Sunrise Road, it is quieter and less hectic than those exploding growing up days…except when the five grandchildren invade our lives. Yet, daily this search for lost objects still goes on. Never a day goes by when I don’t ask my Favorite Preacher, “Have you seen my coffee cup?”

We probably need to add one more object to my search list…my shoes. Wearing shoes in my house in unheard of, but growing up in Laurel, MS on First Avenue, I learned about stickers hanging around in innocent looking soft grass. This prompted me to never go outside without my shoes.

Just this week, I’ve lost something else. I’ve lost my column. Let me back up. Recently I read these words from another writer, “They came begging: words, ideas, thoughts came to me and begged to be expressed.”

Confession time: I have nothing to promote today; neither is there any words or ideas begging to be expressed. They all seemed to have slinked off into the sunset into the valley of lostness.

Can you relate to this experience? As a teacher, coach, preacher, leader, parent, etc. are there times when you simply do not want to hold class or even show up for the day? When responsibility calls your name do you ever want to answer, “Absent”?

Sure you have. Nevertheless, there are days when you want to break out with laughter and jump right in there with these words, “I want to be first.”

Grandchild No. Five once brought a game to the kitchen table and graced me with these words, “Come play with me, BB. I want to be last.” No, her exact words were, “I want to be first.”

Are you aware God spoke these same words? He says to us through His Word, “I want to be first. I have picked you. Now you pick me.” That can be found in Matthew 6:33. If I understand this, in the Valley of Lostness, there is always a Lost and Found Department. I know because I once was lost and now I am found by His love.

I may have lost my coffee cup, my shoes, my ability to write a column, but there is one part of my life I have never lost. All my life I have had a love affair with His Word as it vaults across my heart giving me direction, warning me, cleansing me and making sense out of all my ramblings in this valley.

Is your life one big rambling mess today? Maybe you haven’t lost your coffee cup or your shoes; just maybe you have lost your way? You might want to find a small group of people who are learning to know the Father better, love Him more deeply and obey Him more completely as they abide in Him.

I have found this wonderful experience with a group of three other women over the past five years. We meet each week around my kitchen table for a time to plunge into our Father’s love and His Word. I always want to answer, “Present,” when the role is called for this special time. A time when God landscapes our heart and mind with shared communication and experiences such as we have. We leave to “bear fruit” or make others’ homesick for their Father.

Well, seems as if I have found my column (for later publication) and the way out of the Lost Valley. Now if I could just find my coffee cup and shoes.

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Member Comments
Member Date
Virginia Gorg08/17/06
I think your coffee cup is with my water bottle. Cute story and nice take on valley. Humor and a good message. :)
Jen Davis08/22/06
I liked how you brought up the topic of those things we lose because this is something that we can all relate to. For me it's shoes-not lost, just misplaced. Your intro paragraph pulled me in and I enjoyed your voice throughout. I got a kick out of your grandchild's comment. You could probably write an entire article on that topic alone.
david grant08/22/06
I like the train of lost thought that went with the lost cups. This was lots 'o fun to read. I don't think you lost your column, its just under a coffee cup, somewhere.
Allison Egley 08/23/06
The title drew me in. I really liked the ideas expressed in this. There have been many days when I not only have wanted to call out "absent!" but unfortunately have. Thanks for the reminders.