Last week we had a lovely time visiting with friends Jim and Louise in Frisco, Texas. I thanked Louise for having a box of tissues in every room. I’m used to that at home (three in the kitchen, actually) but sometimes when I’m in someone else’s home I have a hard time finding a tissue.
For years I referred to tissues as “Kleenex.” Then a friend who was also a Procter and Gamble employee rebuked me because they used only Puffs and Kleenex is made by Kimberly-Clark. So around him I got in the habit of saying “tissue” and it stuck, though I still prefer to use Kleenex.
Incidentally, have you noticed that Kleenex has gotten thinner over the years? When I was in Panama, I bought a box called “Classic Kleenex” and that verified my complaint. The Classic version was much thicker! But I haven’t seen those in the U.S.
But I digress. When I mentioned the ubiquitous Kleenex to Louise, she said it was because she, too, has allergies and a frequent drippy nose. Then she added, “The other thing I have in every room is scissors.”
“Me, too!” I exclaimed. I have never talked to anyone else about my determination to have scissors in every room (and four in the kitchen–one on each end and kitchen shears on each side of the island.)
In part, it’s laziness. I don’t want to have to walk very far when I need scissors. But more than that, it’s efficiency. For example, I can break a thread with the best of them, but a cut thread is much easier to get through the eye of a needle than a broken one.
Years ago, a student gave me a lovely pair of stork embroidery scissors, its tiny beak perfect for many projects. I kept it in my purse–in keeping with always having scissors handy. And then TSA started making demands on my purse contents. What? I can’t take those tiny scissors with me? I was upset. The first time (yes, you are understanding!) I went out, bought a padded envelope and postage from the gift shop, and mailed it back to myself. Then back through security.
The next time I forgot to take my scissors out, I didn’t have time to go through that process, so I lost it in more ways than one. I did not take well that they kept my scissors. In fact, I argued hotly with the guard, asking if I could pick them up on my way back. No, evidently not.
I actually embarrassed my husband, because, unfortunately, the guard was a former student. So what? If a TSA guard is the best he can do with his college degree, then….
Now, on my third–or fourth–pair of stork scissors, I am finally remembering to take them out of my purse when traveling.
Then when we went on a Royal Caribbean cruise last winter, my luggage was delayed getting to our room because I’d packed scissors in my suitcase! Who knew that wasn’t allowed? It’s okay with TSA, for crying out loud. The RC carabinieri kept those scissors and also a knife I’d brought for cutting fruit. I was not happy.
So when I needed to cut a tag from a new garment, I had to run to find the steward who had to find scissors for me. Aggravating! I need scissors with me always.
So how does this relate spiritually? Am I as diligent about having a Bible in every room? No, I admit I am not. The scripture wall hangings don’t count; I realize that.
Do I get as upset about not having quiet time with God as I do about tissues and scissors? Sorry. I confess I don’t.
Every day, I pray that God’s priorities will be my priorities. Analyzing all this as I write makes me realize that that is definitely a prayer I need to pray–and respond to his Holy Spirit nudges.
Am I “laying up treasures on earth” in a way I hadn’t thought about before? Yes, I fear so. I’d better let those go and work more on accumulating my spiritual treasures.
“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal [and where TSA takes them away.] But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal [and TSA is irrelevant”] (Matthew 16:19-20.)
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