Kayla smiled as she stretched. Eyes still closed, she relished the softness of the pillow under her head, the cradling support of her new mattress under her, and the snuggly blanket wrapped around her, still as fuzzy as the day she bought it. She loved mornings, and but this morning came with an additional thrill. A event awaited her, one that she had been anticipating with delight for weeks.
Eager to get started, Kayla rolled out of bed. Walking to the huge closet, she quickly put on a green sweatshirt over a gray t-shirt, a pair of jeans, and her green sneakers. Although it wasn’t quite winter yet, the mornings in her part of Florida had gotten colder than usual, thus necessitating her clothing layers. Once the sun was high in the sky, she would be able to shed the sweatshirt. She thought about the upcoming event as she brushed her hair and applied just a touch of makeup, and then added a pair of green and gray dangly earrings. Looking at herself in the bathroom mirror, she nodded with satisfaction. Completely coordinated, she looked good.
On her way to the kitchen she bumped into the hall table, knocking over the overstuffed mail basket. Mail went flying everywhere. She hadn’t realized how long it had been since she had actually read the piles of mail she received every day. Maybe she should take the time to go through it now, before she left for the event. Although time was tight, she should have time to sort through most of them. Besides, from the looks of it, it would only take a few minutes to toss all that junk mail in the trash.
Kayla retrieved the trash can from the kitchen, and bending down, began picking up one piece after another. Ads for car services and warranty extensions designed to play on her fear of the unknown future, pleas for contributions along with letters and pictures intended to elicit guilt should she decide not to give, and offers for credit cards created to make it easy to give in to temptations filled her hands. She tossed them in the trash can, and then bent to pick up more. A hand addressed envelope caught her eye. Reading the return address, she was surprised to find her father’s name there. She squinted, trying to remember when she had received it. But try as she might, she couldn’t remember having received the letter. How long had that been mixed in with the junk mail? Not having the time to read it right then, she put it back in the mail basket. As she picked up more mail, she was dismayed to find more letters that had escaped her notice. A few of them were from her father, but the rest were from friends. Again she was puzzled. She understood why her father would write a pen-and-paper letter – he was old and had not taken to electronic communication – but her friends? She was always getting emails and messages from them, so why had they felt the need to send her letters? Maybe she’d find out when she opened them, but that would have to wait. She added them to the mail basket before stooping down the pick up the remaining mail, separating the handwritten ones from the mass produced ones. When the floor was clean, she looked at her trash where junk mail she had not asked for overflowed. Why did they keep sending her this waste of trees when she never responded? Did they think by sheer volume they would win her over? Well, that wasn’t going to happen. The trash was the perfect place for them. Personal letters, on the other hand, were important and needed to be kept safe until they could be read. Curious about what they said, she was just about to risk the time to open one when her phone alarm beeped. She groaned with frustration. It had taken longer than expected to clean up this mail. She had to leave now in order to arrive on time, and she hadn’t even had breakfast yet. Grabbing the good mail from the basket, she left the bad mail in the trash can and hurried to the kitchen. She stuffed the personal mail into the front pocket of her backpack in case she had an opportunity to read them later, grabbed an energy bar and a bottle of water, and hurried out the front door, locking it behind her.
It is the LORD who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed. (Deut 31:8)
Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. (2 Cor 9:7)
Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” (Heb 13:5)
So then, brothers, stand firm and hold to the traditions that you were taught by us, either by our spoken word or by our letter. (2 Thes 2:15)