I love the whole process of going on a trip. It forces me to examine what I really do and do not need. It also exposes props that I use to make myself comfortable, or worse, presentable. However, when you try to get four people in a small car, your props sometimes have to go. I have to admit, though, deep down I like the freedom that comes without the extra baggage. I remember when Chuck and I went to Paris for 10 days and each of us only took one carry on bag. It was wonderful to roll through customs without lugging more “necessities.” Beach trips are even better. Swimsuit, sunscreen, sundresses, towels, books, lotion, toothbrush, done.
Which brings me to the question rolling around in my head. What is it we really need? We spend our lives on the supposed “necessities” and wear ourselves out lugging around the extra bags, but could we really, really streamline and focus?
Apply this metaphor to your thought life. How many pieces of luggage are you dragging around there? Did you really mean to pack fear, anxiety, inaction, doubt? Do you really “need” those?
Scripture says we have the “mind of Christ” so how does that impact our ability to think clearly, without all the baggage? And what does He think about anyway?
Just for fun let me share how He directed my thoughts on the way home from Florida. We have this long standing exercise of conversing via billboards. All the way down there, it didn’t even enter my mind to look. But on the way home I began to feel the familiar tug and opened my heart to whatever He said. I realized He was answering questions that I had asked while we walked on the beach.
I had asked for direction for my life, my family and my work. I also surrendered the need to have life go “my way.” In His loving way, He revealed how my “plans” to do His work were still about me. He said, “Jana, you just make it all about Me. I will take care of the rest.”
So my response to Him was honest but confused. “I love that idea, but how do you do that? Do I do nothing and wait on you?” And this is the ah-ha.
“Of course not,” was His reply. Because He is always working. He explained that really making my life revolve around Him, about being for Him, through Him, to Him, was to be my main objective. The other stuff, my supposed props and necessities, were just baggage that was wearing me out. All that luggage was full of stuff trying to make me comfortable and be presentable. Those bags were full of stuff about me, for me, to me.
Here is what He had to say just to remind me that He is present, working, able and inspiring:
Let’s Make a Big Impression.
Making a Difference for Hurting People.
Spread Your Wings and Fly
Tested. Trusted. True.
Total Support is a Beautiful Thing.
An Alluring Business.
Adventure above the Rest.
Pride. Tradition. Excellence.
Preparation with a Purpose.
Try today to travel light. You might find that you and Jesus really is enough. His thoughts really are higher than ours and He wants us to be where He is… I love traveling with Him.
3 thoughts on “Reading the Road Signs Well”
Loved this Jana…and it was something I needed to read. Thank you!
Thank you so much for having this conversation! I felt as though I was in a spiritual battle this morning. This so addresses what I have been dealing with. Thank you Jana!
ability to think clearly without all the baggage=freedom. This is what I desire!