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Sunday, March 26, 2017

Packing Your Suitcase

Posted Sunday, April 22, 2012, at 7:07 PM

Dad's memorial in 2009.
I may have mentioned this before, but years ago at a funeral, I heard a minister ask if our bags were packed. "Are you ready to meet our Lord?"

This afternoon, I was thinking about our individual suitcases. Some of us have the best that money can buy, but if a person were to peek inside, it would surprise them how very little there is inside.. Their sole purpose for owning such a piece of luggage is to show their affluence and to impress others by the designer label.

Remember the Samsonite Commercial years ago? Where that big gorilla jumped up and down and tortured that suitcase something fierce? The premise was that nothing could destroy a Samsonite Suitcase.

There are other individuals who over-pack their suitcases with "contingency" clothes and plans. Feverishly planning for all the changes in the weather; their suitcases get so full of worry and planning that they have to "sit" on the lid just to get the zipper to close.

I think that I have been all of the above. I "over-pack" my suitcases for my short trips to see family or friends. I was once dazzled by the designer labels and envious of those who seemed to have it all.

I have been caught sprinting in an undignified fashion while desperately trying to hold on to all of my "necessary stuff". My back and neck have suffered grievous harm because of my vanity.

I don't think I have quite achieved the "Samsonite" toughness to weather all of life's trials and tribulations. But I have, however, been able to eliminate the weight of the world from time to time.

Whether your suitcase is filled with optimism or sorrow; past hurts or joyous memories, we all have baggage of some sort.

All of us have been privileged to "pack" our bags for our life's journey. Our choices in life may weigh us down or impede our progress to the correct gate. We may choose the "designer look" but have very little to show for all the glamor that others see on the outside.

We may or may not have a "Samsonite" suitcase that has protected us from careless bellboys or luggage handlers.

What we do have, as all Americans do, is Freedom. We are free to choose the style of our suitcases and the contents therein. We are free to change our minds about what we actually need for our journey in life.

We are free to share all that we hold dear by Free Speech.

I recently purchased a "huge" suitcase that you could pack a large dog in comfortably. Why? Because, every trip that I have taken the past few years, I end up with gifts to carry back with me from the people who love me.

I take nothing for granted as I get older. I want my life to reflect all of the love that has been given to my by those who have crossed my path or walked with me for a little while.

I want to know that my suitcase is filled with the gift of generosity, not a miserly or sly promise of a designer label.

Our treasures in life may not be packed in a suitcase, but ask yourself as you wait in line at the baggage claim, "Is my suitcase going to survive the journey? Will I recognize it amongst the other "basic black" bags as they appear at the top of the carousel?

Some of us have been experiencing the buffetings of a very angry gorilla lately. It seems as though we can't make a move without getting some type of ill-treatment. We might be tough enough for the short-haul--but the Real manufacturer of our "Samsonite's" will not only keep us safe, but He will protect our hearts too.

Those pesky last words in writing a blog are always the hardest for me. I struggle with the closing far more that I do with the concept of what needs to be written.

As long as I am able, I will continue to inventory the contents of my suitcase. I won't expect everyone to purchase the brand that I have, nor will I lecture anyone on what they need to pack.

Have a great week everyone!

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Great blog as always Bonnie. Thank you for a wonderful start to the week.

It is not what you have in the bag, it is what you choose to do with it. Regardless of labels and contents, the "bag" always says something about the owner and who that person is. Funny how the bag with the gorilla always seemed to survive. I guess the harder you jump, the stronger you become. God can only give you the tools---what you decide to do with them is up to you.

Have a great week. Thanks for your words as always.

-- Posted by OpinionMissy on Mon, Apr 23, 2012, at 7:55 AM

Great story Bonnie. I don't have baggage I carry around any more, got rid of it years ago. Now about the only thing I like to carry in my suitcase besides clothes is my knitting needles so I can still do a little poking.

-- Posted by MsMarylin on Mon, Apr 23, 2012, at 9:39 AM

Thank you Missy.

MsM: we have all felt those pokes.

-- Posted by KH Gal on Mon, Apr 23, 2012, at 9:41 AM

I'll be ready to go. I can admit I have baggage, but I'll be ready to leave it behind. I will leave behind children and grandchildren and family/friends who knew I loved them with all my heart. No worries

-- Posted by jessiemiller on Mon, Apr 23, 2012, at 9:51 AM

There can be constructive pokes to get someone motivated especially with children as long as its not criticism.

-- Posted by MsMarylin on Mon, Apr 23, 2012, at 10:15 AM

I haven't felt constructive pokes from your direction MsM, frankly. More goading, and well.... just pokey, seeking attention. And I absolutely wish I would not say this, but, oh well.

Children don't need poked, they need constructive guideance and positive examples.

-- Posted by jessiemiller on Mon, Apr 23, 2012, at 10:53 AM

Whatever Jessie, Your right to your opinion.

I have raised many children, including some that didn't belong to me. I have had teacher's tell me what ever I am doing with my kids, keep doing it.

My kids got poked with constructive choices to choose which is the best choice to make. It worked out good. None of my kids have been in trouble, one works for medicaid and another is an officer in the Army National Guard. Another one has had the same job for the past 10 years.

Here's an example of one of my pokes when my kids were still in school. To get them out of bed in the morning, I would put a song on the stereo and sing along with it as loud as I could sing. Worked every time I needed them out of bed, and they weren't late for school. It was fun for me and for them. They would laugh about my singing and the song I picked...

-- Posted by MsMarylin on Mon, Apr 23, 2012, at 11:28 AM

don't feed the bears and most importantly, don't throw stones from glass houses.

-- Posted by MrMister on Fri, Apr 27, 2012, at 9:12 PM

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Bonnie Bird
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Fixing fence is the one of the hardest jobs on a ranch. I no longer live on a ranch, but I do know what hard work is. Fences are everyone's concern, but nowadays,the "hole" is always your neighbor's side not your own. It used to be that you would respect your neighbor and mend the fence together. If their cows got in your field, a simple phone call resolved the problem. You might even saddle up your own horse and help them gather them up. We need more people who are willing to roll their sleeves up and fix the fence regardless of who your neighbor is. There are people in this country who need to be reminded that a fence is like the way you should conduct your life. Your posts should be straight and neat. The wire needs to be stretched tight and your gate might be closed, but can still be easily opened. And most of all, we can all saddle up together and ride the range, it won't matter if you have an Appaloosa, Quarter Horse or Thoroughbred. The cows still have to be gathered, fences have to be fixed, and the range is a wide open space of opportunity for us all.
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