As Mothers Day was approaching this past May Scott asked me a few weeks before "if I had any ideas of a gift for Mothers Day" and my reply was an instantaneous "a night away somewhere." He looked at me with those confused half raised eyebrows and quickly said "why?" I answered instantly "because its so freeing and relaxing." How many of you can relate??? We have spent many nights in a hotel over the past year for doctors visits in Cleveland but it was always because of an agenda or an appointment I had to go to. I want a night away for no rhyme or reason where I can sit on the bed, eat fast food and vending machine bottled pop in those tiny cups with ice from the machine, and watch hours of mind numbing t.v. Maybe that doesnt sound glamorous to you but for me the kicker is the choice I have to contribute to that freedom.
Now if your going for a huge long vacation its not as relaxing, but an overnighter you can definitely get away with packing as "little" as possible because honestly if you forget your socks the world wont end over such minute catastrophe for one day :) The freedom I am talking about is that with a "night away" I can choose what to pack, and the baggage to bring along. In life everyday we are surounded by "baggage" whether it be physical, emotional, financial, relational, or whatever we all have stuff we carry. It may be baggage from a choice you made or from a choice someone else made that led you packing your bags.
Max Lucado has a book called "Traveling Light" and in the first chapter he talks about this concept in the most amazing illustration. It seems before our feet even hit the floor in the morning we throw on a backpack of fear, a duffle bag of anxiousness, and continue to load up until we are tripping over our suitcase of worry by time we have even left the house.
I have to admit lately I have really been struggling with this. I believe in my heart more than anything God's grace and redemption but then my human nature kicks in and instead of trusting Him with that "baggage" I decide I will be ok and can just carry it around for a little bit. Have you ever gone to the grocery store and by the time you are home you are tired so you decide instead of making multiple trips you will load as many of those plastic sacks at once and make fewer trips? By the time you are loaded up you have bags hanging from both arms, wrists and as many fingers when you finally get inside your circulation has been so cut off from the "bags" that the pain is setting in and you can't wait to sit them all down??? I think this is what its like to carry those burdens around everyday, we are fearful of the journey without it all at once so instead we load up and carry them with us until it hurts and cuts of the circulation between us, those around us and God.
By getting away on an overnighter or a weekend trip it may not be on a sunny filled beach but its somewhere different, somewhere that you aren't surrounded by the burdens of everyday life. Its a small alotment of time to get away and regardless of how much that closet needs cleaned out its not staring you in the face. Now it may not be possible in reality for an overnighter, especially if your like me and I need to practice packing lightly alot! lol There is something to be said about physically feeling that sense of temporary freedom and being separated from the junk of life everyday but when we can't physically get away I think the Lord can allow our minds and our spirits to get away. Matthew 11:28-29 (Amp) "Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy-laden and overburdened, and I will cause you to rest. [I will ease and relieve and refresh your souls.] Take My yoke upon you and learn of Me, for I am gentle (meek) and humble (lowly) in heart, and you will find rest (relief and ease and refreshment and recreation and blessed quiet) for your souls."
Chosing freedom from the burdens of this life aren't easy and at times is a daily if not hourly decision to put those bags of burdens down and trust in Gods peace. I just pray that you would try and choose each day before your feet hit the floor that you will not allow Satan to load you up with bag after bag of burdens to drag throughout the day, its exhausting and God sent His only son Jesus to die for us to have that freedom. Freedom from worry, sorrow, fear, anxiousness, the past, the present and the future. So go unpack and enjoy your time away!!! This weekend will surely be filled with busyness, lots of softball but also relaxation. We may not be going to a beach or remote island somewhere far away but its still nice to get away for a few days and leave all the stuff behind. We can "pack lightly" and just have a little downtime from life. Whatever is here that needs done will surely be waiting for us when we get back, but for now we are checking out and enjoying our time away :) See you all back on Tuesday :)