Sunday, July 17, 2011

taking and leaving

We left a lot behind in the mountains of Eastern Tennessee.
We left a house where my kids learned to play together,
where Lucy became a 'super sister',
 where Joey hung his first light fixture,
 where Oliver mastered the stairs,
{and performed many 'concerts' with his sister}

where I grew tomatoes.

We left our friends.

We left Watauga River fun with our cousins.

As much as God has upheld us and strengthened us over the past few months, I had a feeling that our loss and struggles were not over yet.  I was right.  We are still in the thick of it.  But when I think of all we've left behind I am reminded of that old U2 song and my mind is flooded with all that I can't leave behind.  And that's what I'm taking with me.  
It's good practice for the day when I leave this world. 

Leaving behind a house I spent so much time organizing and decorating, but taking with me the memories we made there.  
Leaving behind crops I worked so hard tending, but taking with me the amazement of God's creation and how it continues to grow and bear fruit.  
Leaving behind people I shared so much of life with, but taking with me the lessons they taught me and the love they shared.

There is much that we leave behind as we journey through life and ultimately as we step into our eternal life in heaven, but there's so much more that we can take with us.
Although the world beckons me to 
worship the temporal, 
work hard for the material, 
sacrifice for the immediate,
I'm after the eternal

Practically speaking, for me, this means:
:: less superficial facebook posts and more heart-to-heart conversations over coffee
:: less searching the internet for the perfect 'thing' to buy {no matter how discounted it may be!} and more searching my Bible for truth that can't be found in 'things'
:: less worrying over what the future holds and more trusting that my life is held in mighty hands
:: less itemized lists of what I 'need' and more time spent serving the needs of others
:: less living in fear and resentment and more living in freedom and love

When we are faced with all that we must leave behind, it's a good time to remember all that we can still carry with us.