The Junk Drawer

A couple days ago, I asked my lovely Bride where something was, and she immediately said, “It’s in the junk drawer.” When I went there, indeed, the item was right where she indicated it would be. So were a bunch of other things.

As a matter of fact, I noticed there were several new additions to the drawer since last I ventured to its cavernous abyss. We hosted a birthday party for our one-year-old granddaughter over the weekend, and some extra things (things that usually sit out) had ended up there. They needed to be hidden away from sight so our guests wouldn’t know we sometimes leave our junk lying around on the kitchen counters. We are, undoubtedly, the only humans on the planet who do such things. We certainly can’t be found out.

“I haven’t done the research”

It caused me to wonder about junk drawers in general. Everyone I’ve ever spoken to about the subject also has a junk drawer. They even call it by the same name as we do—the junk drawer. I haven’t done the research, but I’m thinking there must be an old, Federal statute that mandates their existence in each home.

In a recent conversation with one of my brothers-in-law, he noted another label for the same creature. He called it the drawer-for-things-you-want-to-know-where-you-can-find-them-when-you-need-them. Same thing… A rose by any other name, and all that…

Junk drawers are for things we need to grab quickly but have no other good place to put them. They’re for items that are odd-sized, one-of-a-kind, or missing an unimportant piece (just in case we find that piece). They’re for items we want to lay our hands on in a moment’s notice. Surprisingly enough, they seem to work pretty well.

It occurred to me that most of us not only have a junk drawer in our homes, we have one in our life as well. It’s not literally a drawer, but it’s the place in our brains (or hearts) we put things we don’t want other folks to readily see. They’re things we want to be able to drag out when we want them, but we’d prefer they were kept out of sight.

A lot of things fit into that category. Occasionally, those things are people. Far too often, I think one of those people happens to be Jesus.

Stored With the Junk

I realize, from our perspective, we don’t always think of Jesus as “people.” We think of him as Lord, God, Savior, or King. Still, he’s often the most important person we stick into the junk drawer of our lives, regardless of what we call him.

We want to be able to drag him out at a moment’s notice. We want to know right where he is at all times. Still, we’d rather he keep out of sight when we have company or are otherwise occupied.

I wonder how he feels about being stored in there with all the other junk. I wonder how we’d feel if we reached in one day and he wasn’t there.

[Dave Zuchelli is a graduate of Pittsburgh Theological Seminary and is currently the pastor of Smith Chapel, in Great Falls, VA.]

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