As humans we are all so materialistic. It amazes me to see the number of rental storage units everywhere. Nearly every house has a storage building in the backyard. Some have several. Our closets and basements are filled with things. Things that we really don't need and will probably never use again! Things that are so precious to us, yet we never think about them and rarely pull them out to be used. We would never consider departing with these piles of worthless treasures.
I remember once hearing the story of missionaries in Columbia. They had spent much of their life in that war-torn, terrorist plagued nation. They had managed to stay as long as possible until the government recommended they leave for their own safety. They had waited a little to long, and had to be evacuated by helicopter. The family had children and every family member was allowed to pack one small suitcase of possessions. Obviously each packed the things most precious to them. A favorite toy, a special dress, perhaps a family photo or two. Gunshots were going off all around them and they worried for their safety. Finally they heard the sound of the approaching helicopter. The terrorists were dangerously close to their home and the helicopter touched down nearby. The family ran across the field trying to reach the winged haven of safety. Each ran carrying their tiny package of prized possessions. The gunshots intensified and the soldiers told them to drop their belongings in order to make it across the field. Even the smallest of the children was forced to drop their things. They each made it across the field and into the helicopter. They reached a safe flight altitude and were carried out of harms way. The family sat in shock. A soldier asked one of the children what it was like to leave their home and all of their possessions behind. The youngster replied: "Free!"
Sometimes we don't realize what really is important in life. That family felt free when the worries of this world, the junk that we all accumulate was no longer binding them down. They were free to live as a family. Their lives had been spared and they could clearly see what was most important in life.
I've thought of that story a lot lately. We are packing up the "things" that we have accumulated this year. New toys, dishes, clothing, JUNK! As missionaries we can't accumulate to much junk, because we are always moving. We try not to get to sentimental about "things." Today we finish packing up our mission home and head to Salem, Virginia to spend our last month with family. We'll pack up our things and get all the last minute things done. We'll have a yardsale and sell our junk to other interested parties. We'll store some things away. We'll give some to Goodwill. Then, we'll manage to pack at least 8, 50 pound bags to take to Peru. Perhaps someday we will learn it would be easier to go with nothing and just be "Free!"
What do you think? Have any "junk" in your life that needs to be cleared out?
Countdown to departure date: 40 days! It's nice to know your praying for us!