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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: First (as in original) (01/10/05)

TITLE: 2 Duffel Bags
By C.L. Burden


Two Duffel Bags

My younger brother, Walt has always been someone that could easily be referred to as a free spirit. He’s single and mobile and that’s the way he likes it. It’s never been uncommon for him to contact the rest of the family from some unexpected location. One winter he ski instructed in Colorado, his summers are often spent competing in volleyball tournaments and boating. Make no mistake, he’s not a bum or lazy. He has been self-supporting for all of his adult years. He’s intelligent, educated and a great money manager which enables him to keep up such a life style.

Last year he came to live with us for a few months. I’ll never forget the night he arrived. He pulled into the drive way in his truck and walked to the door with two duffel bags. John said, “Let me help you unload!” Then Walt answered in his casual tone, “This is it.”

TWO DUFFEL BAGS! He had to be kidding! I mean really, it took a 24-foot moving van, packed top to bottom to move my stuff! Moving for me required weeks and weeks of packing and sorting. And here my kid brother (just 2 years younger than me) shows up with his world stowed away in two duffel bags.

Many times since that night, the thought of Walt (and “his light load”) has made me think of all of the unnecessary baggage I carry around. Oh not the material possessions I have (though I know many of them are unnecessary too) but, the emotional baggage. Often times the effects of guilt, worry, bitterness, jealousy, anger (and numerous other sins) fill my heart beyond capacity so that no moving van could ever haul away the hurt I feel. But…through the grace of God we find that we don’t have to carry any of our pain with us. 1 Peter 5:7 says, “Casting all of your cares upon him, for he cares for you.” Plain and simple, it’s right there in the Word of God. I give all of my cares to Him. All? Wait, does that say “all?” Let’s look again…yep, that’s what it says.

Now I seriously doubt my earthly “stuff” will ever fit into two duffel bags. (Let’s be honest here, my shoes won’t fit into two duffel bags.) But, my emotional baggage can fit into far less than that. In fact in the hands of God, it can be non-existent (it says so right in the bible.)

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This article has been read 769 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Marjorie Arrowood01/17/05
Great lesson! Thanks.
Angie Schulte01/17/05
Great lesson! Sometimes, we get so wrapped in all the stuff that we forget the mission before us! It reminded me of the rich young man whom Christ told to go sell everything and then he could follow Him. Sometimes the stuff does keep us from following as good as we could or should!
Betty Shattuck01/17/05
I enjoyed your article and how you applied a spiritual lesson to the emotional "stuff" we clutter up our lives with. But I don't see where the "first (as in original)" subject is applied. What you said, though, was very good.
Kelly Klepfer01/18/05
Great story. Thanks. I appreciated the humor, too. Now if Walt was a woman, he would have to have a 3rd duffel for shoes and purses!!!
Karen Deikun01/18/05
I enjoyed your story and application. The only thing is, I can't figure out how it goes with the topic "first". Other than that, I thought it was good. Your point was well taken.
Teresa Lee Rainey01/19/05
I enjoyed your story very much. However, I am also wondering how it applies to "first". Still, good job on the story.
L.M. Lee01/21/05
girl's gotta have her shoes! ha-ha! But a lighter load is a great idea.
Deborah Anderson01/22/05
LOL had to laugh about the shoe comment. I see where others mentioned this being off topic. I'm wondering if you meant your "first" epiphany of emotional baggage, maybe? God bless you.