The anticipation of this day has been overwhelming. You have read about this destination your entire life. You have heard about it and even seen it in your mind’s eye … wondering about endless splendor in every part of this city. Streets of gold, trees planted by a river that produces fruit at all times.
Somewhere you in your life, the businesses of every day squashed the dream of ever getting to this place. You felt like this place was meant for only the super-rich, or the incredibly lucky. You lost hope somewhere along the way that you could ever get a ticket – after all, the price of this type of travel costs everything.
Then somehow, hope became restored. You were given a ticket to this destination and brought back to your child-like anticipation of being able to go. Filled with excitement, you wish you could get everyone you love to go with you on this most important journey.
You dust off the old suitcase and begin sorting through your things. You carefully lay your most favorite items in the bag, treasures that you have been saving your whole life for this day. You look at the ticket again and are surprised to read the fine print. “Due to our travel guidelines, we require you to leave all baggage at home.” How will this work? Taking nothing to this new place will be so strange, so light, so unencumbered. “But what if I need this…” oh, the thoughts keep coming. “But I need that…” and then “What if I can’t find it there?” You grow anxious as the time draws near for you to leave. You thought you could fit everything you needed in a bag that you have been saving for the one most unique place that you have always wanted to go.
Then in a moment, new energy arises inside of you. You realize that you can bring with you precisely what you need, and you can’t fit it in a bag, no matter how fancy. You begin to remember those you love. You memorize faces more deeply in the recess of your mind … their laughter, their tears, their hugs, and their love. All of it remains with you.
The time draws to its day of destination. Light encompasses the ticket taker, and you pass through the portal and realize you are not in a destination, you are in a presence. The presence of the One who made you, the presence of the One who has always kept you. The presence of the One you gave you His spirit to guard you through this life. The presence of the One who has been for you for eternity. Your empty hands, free from baggage, can finally embrace the One who had embraced you from before the moment you were born. You have finally arrived. You are entirely free! –Cherise Selley