"Do you have to go?"In younger days I could pack a duffle bag and be ready within half an hour for a trip, no matter what the length of stay. Toiletries? Whatever soap, toothbrush and shampoo I could grab from the bathroom. I didn't even think about the "what if's." With each decade added to my driver's license, the list of "what if's" has bludgeoned. A mini medicine chest is packed among comfortable shoes, dress shoes, casual shoes and flip-flops. Maps, books, magazines, drawing pad and snacks are stuffed in a shoulder bag with the camera, extra batteries, and wallet. Yadda, yadda, yadda.
"Too much!"I think about the freedom of youth due to being oblivious and naive. Life teaches us to plan or pay the consequences. I wonder, though, if I should try to give up some control of the "what ifs," which is really out of my control anyway, and deal with life as it happens. I'd be much happier to not fret about little things. I am sure there is a Walmart along my journey. Those big tubes of toothpaste really don't take up that much room. Green cheese can be tossed out. You can't find Moon Pies, White Castle or Corky's Smokin' hot Memphis BBQ sauce out here in Oregon, so buy regional!
Of course I am talking about the details of earthly life. The big picture of spiritual gifts and blessings are not to be thought of lightly, but made to grow for God's glory. That takes some planning and diligence. The Bible says we plan our course, but God determines our steps. Christ also talks of making our talents grow by planning wisely.
But, the little things that seem to matter only to us earthlings takes up so much time and energy that we lose sight of the big picture. Ipods and laptops and cell phones need uploads, downloads and charging. If we don't take control and plan for every "what if," the house, work and church might fall apart while we are gone. We might have to sit on a plane without earbuds and actually visit with someone!
The irony in this is that I am traveling to Amish country for both pleasure and to interview an Amish lady about her life. I need to get closer to the roots of life as God has planned for me and leave the time and energy stealers behind. I am looking forward to learning some lessons from the Amish. I'll keep you informed. Meanwhile, I'm going to unplug my computer and not worry about a last minute Facebook entry. That's a start, anyway!
"Let's enjoy our time together."