Did you ever have a pastor say something to you that you weren’t quite sure how to take? I did. About a year ago I had the opportunity to meet with my pastor to discuss a decision I needed to make. As we were getting settled in, he referred to my bible as ‘that suitcase’. At the time I wasn’t sure what he meant by that.
Now before you go judging the pastor, you should know that my bible is often stuffed full of papers, notes, bookmarks and even drawings from my granddaughter. When I looked at his bible, it seemed very neat by comparison. So was it an insult?
Knowing the pastor, I don’t believe it was. But I must admit it often bothered me.
Then yesterday, I was thinking about my upcoming trip to Israel and what I would need to buy, how much I would need to pack. I usually travel light when I go away, but I’ve never been out of the country before, and never traveled for 11 days. As I was mulling this over (with my first cup of coffee starting to clear away the brain fog that greets me each day) I pulled out my bible. As often happens, I remembered the pastors words and suddenly a light bulb went off in my head! My bible really IS my suitcase!
Think about it – as believers, we live on this earth as sojourners, traveling through this world until we can go home to our own country. Like any traveler, we carry around the bare essentials we need to get through the journey. And that’s exactly what the Word of God is. It is everything we need to get through each day we are away from home!
So whether that pastor meant his remark as a dig, or more likely a tongue-in-cheek observation, he was absolutely right. My bible is my suitcase. And so is yours. Whether it is simple and neat or stuffed full of all sorts of placeholders, it has everything we need to get through every day we are away from home.