There is so much we carry around that we simply don’t need. So, what are you willing to leave behind on the boat? I say, leave your grievances and complaints and fault-findings and need for excess and comparisons.
— Jennifer Pastiloff
Good Tuesday morning, friends! I know you wondered where your encouraging e-mail was yesterday (I hope!), but I beg your forgiveness. It was Labor Day, the office was closed, and my family went hiking. It was refreshing, mind and body.
Years ago when I was in seminary I traveled with some of my classmates on the first school trip to Israel. I had to borrow money to afford to go, but I was so excited! On the Thursday we traveled to Tel Aviv I drove to Raleigh and began the usual pre-9/11 flight schedule. At the front desk I checked my one piece of luggage, carrying my backpack onto the plane. When we landed in Newark to transfer to El Al Airlines I waited at the baggage carousel for my luggage. I waited while other people got theirs. I waited until all other luggage was gone. I waited until I was the last person standing at the carousel. I waited until I was over the fear that my luggage was lost! This was the beginning of my trip to Israel, and I boarded the plane expecting the worst.
I noticed as we worked our way through airports and buses and hotels that my trip was suddenly easier and better than my friends’. They struggled, I breezed. They lugged, I laughed. They grumbled, I grinned. Truth be told I had to make do with clothing issues during the week, but I was fine, clean and in good form. Yes, they had their chosen clothes, designer looks, and “comforts”, but they paid a price for it. I was free. Later that week I learned that my luggage had taken a detour to Germany and was headed to Jerusalem. After a week of freedom I was once again encumbered with luggage after 7 days. I had what I thought I needed when I packed but had learned I was freer without. I fell back to the pack. Freedom was gone.
What are you carrying around, emotionally, that you think you need but can really live better, freer, without? You may think you can’t live without it (them), but I promise you all will be better without anything negative in your spirit. The comforts you think you are afforded by “grievances and complaints and fault-findings and need for excess and comparisons” are really poisons and anvils. Leave them on the boat of your life and get on with the free journey you want. And don’t let the airport call you to tell you they found that worthless luggage!
Have a great week!