I think about the first few Chapters of Genesis as I’m tucking tiny sleeves of tiny teeshirts into overflowing drawers. I wonder, as key-holders, how it is that we do not begin every morning this way, reading, “in the beginning…”
Remembering how the Earth was formed in the void. How we were created from dust and bone. How we were given dominion over the Earth. Dominion begets responsibility. We are the key holders.
I think about these things as I dance around refrigerators placed haphazardly on the kitchen floor. As I pull out pots and pans from old cabinets long needing replacing. As I weed through used paint cans and bleach grout and shine silver and move boxes and wash dust from dishes.
This house, our little dominion has been ours, then had been fully rented, then had been rented halfway, then had been rented fully once more, then had been ours again in the matter of several weeks. There is a dream of moving- of sending our daughter to a good school, with friendships already established. The dream was close, and then closer, and then farther away. It is a ride I would not have waited so long in line for.
So, I think about the beginnings of things as I clean and scrub and hang pictures and move furniture without knowing how long it will remain. I think about the words, “permanent” and “temporary” and how we’re called not to live in either. I think about this dominion, this space that has my name on it’s title and it’s keys in my hand and all of the people I pass daily with their cups out- they’re keys unlock no doors in which they can close.
I think about the homeless woman in Penn Station yesterday who tipped the contents of her cup into a man’s hat who sang a familiar Italian Aria so purely, she cried for the beauty of it. She remembered for one bright second, she was a key holder, too.
I think about beauty and why it’s important. In the beginning…..God made the earth and it shone with brilliance and wonder. Stars and iris gardens. Fruit orchards and skipping rivers. And He handed it right over to us, it’s guardians. We were for beauty made.
So, I spin and toil and work my fingernails bloody with splinters and paint flecks the insides of cabinets that are mine, for now. They bear my name. I will continue to make plans for the garden in our sub-urban jungle in which Bubba, the neighborhood Tabby reigns King. Sometimes I let him stalk the sparrows between the tomatoes. Sometimes, I shoo him away. Dominion. It is my responsibility.
I am called to care- to scrub counters clean. To rearrange furniture. Just because our future is uncertain does not relinquish my birth right. Futures are certain only to one. Every time I wipe out the sink or walk the garbage to the curb or lovingly finger a rose petal I am walking steadfastly in my inheritance. I am a key holder.
It is so much more than washing socks. Than learning how to darn the tears in the pockets of jeans. The re-design of a dwelling. The swelling of connection to the dirt and the water and the sky. It is deeper than paint; it runs in it’s lifeblood. We were meant to care for, to love, to bring and inspire beauty. For ourselves. For others. To make our plot one in which most closely captures the character of God. The beauty of Him. The peace and comfort of him. The acceptance and love. We are the key holders here for however long. We do not get to choose the length of time, but we do get to choose what we do with what we have.