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What have you kept?

IMG_4109It’s a season of subtracting for me.

I’ve spent a lifetime accumulating. Collecting books, papers, files, friends, travels, vehicles, a home, a church, jobs and a few paychecks. I have a lot, just not a lot to show for it. I invested a lot of myself in the doing, but from the distance of years, it diminishes.

I rifle through boxes of “the kept.” Don’t need this. I’ll never use this again. Get rid of it, recycle it, leave it behind. Anything I won’t use again is set adrift. Amazing how this season is upon me. Everything that I wouldn’t pack up in a moving box is fair game.

All except the things that are heavy with memories. The rings that mom and dad exchanged on their wedding day. The book that Grandpa wrote. The birthday card my daughter made. And photos. Oh, the photos. These things have the power to tap into memories I didn’t know I had. That circuitry holds all I’ve ever done and, blessedly, has sifted, sorted and centrifuged it into one solitary particle.

That particle is impossibly dense, yet imperceptibly heavy. It’s the lightest thing in the world to carry. It goes anywhere you go and its no burden at all to bear.

All that I have ever loved is there.

Not what I’ve learned or done. Not what I have said or meant to say. Not what I’ve found or lost. By all accounts it is nothing. Yet, it is everything. It has complete power over me. And it empowers me.

“Just go!” it says, “You’ve got everything you need! We’ve seen to that.”

I’m beginning to believe it.

Letting go of what lies behind, I reach toward what lies ahead. How silly I would look toting a suitcase. IMG_4311

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