Will you travel light?

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So what’s your approach when you are about to set off on the journey? Are you someone who plans and packs meticulously weeks before the event or someone who throws everything in the bag as the car is running outside the house?

I know that in our family life we seem to struggle to “travel light” always falling into the trap of thinking we couldn’t do without the one key thing on any holiday or journey. On the school ski trip to New Hampshire in February I had to convince one of the students to line up at check-in and charm our way into sharing their baggage allowance even on the way back following 24 hours in NYC (thank you Olivia!).

This week we were challenged in the Gospel to listen to God’s call for us and respond without delay and there seems to be a natural fit this week to look to challenge ourselves to live simply in some way. It asks us to think about what we place at the centre of our lives. Have a look at how CAFOD has led this campaign.

I did some research on this to look at the best selling products of all time… they were;

  • Coca Cola – which is drunk by 1.8 billion people every day (20% of the world’s population!)
  • Sony Playstation – 344 million units sold
  • Lipitor – a drug for high cholesterol $141 billion. Maybe a link there to our in-activity..
  • Toyota Corolla – 40.7 million sold
  • iPhone – 516 million sold which is more than the total population of the EU

I believe that it’s not about beating ourselves up in life for enjoying the good things or working hard to get a few things we enjoy. I think it asks us to ensure that these things don’t become the centre of our lives and what we actually live for.

We are called in our faith to centre our lives on God. We need to rediscover the gift of silence, simplicity and perhaps disconnect from our interactive world (perhaps ironically as I write this on WordPress to share on twitter!)

So what can we do to help get the balance right…

  • Is there anything you feel you can do without? Perhaps this is an opportunity to give away anything you feel you don’t use or need or donate it to a  charity shop. Decluttering our lives can be very liberating!
  • Are there times when we can obsess about getting the latest and greatest new thing? Think of ways to catch ourselves before pressing that buy button online or in a shop.
  • How can we reconnect with what matters most? A challenge to invest most in our family, friendships and faith.

If we can strip all of this away I believe it allows us to have time to listen to Jesus’ call for us all as His followers. The burden of carrying a heavy load can hold us back so let’s take the time to think about what matters most – have a great journey on the road ahead.

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