I have the amazing blessing of living close to my grandparents. I often stay at their house, and I almost always forget to pack my toothbrush, or I only bring enough clothes for two days when I end up staying for a week.
That's the story of my life. I never pack enough of what I need. I hope beyond all hope that I 'pack' enough of what I need to make it to the celestial kingdom. I want to live with eternity in mind. I want my packing list to include enough faith. You can never run short of it. I want to pack away some service. Lots of service, because service is the key to true Christlike charity. I want to pack enough courage, so I won't break when temptations come. I want to pack enough love and gratitude. Enough to show those around me what they mean to me. I want to pack some knowledge, so I can be prepared. I want to tuck away enough experience, for with experience comes wisdom and light. I want to be prepared when the judgment day comes, and look back on my life and say I packed the right things for my journey.
And now I ask myself, am I seizing every opportunity so I can add it to my 'suitcase'? Am I wasting moments? There are opportunities in each of them, so vital for adding to the pack; but so fragile. One wasted moment is an opportunity gone forever. I can never gain that back. So, I'm asking myself: Am I doing everything in my ability to prepare myself for those moments? Or am I just skating by on a whim, letting life trap me in trivial, petty, unimportant daily tasks which yield me no knowledge, no preparation for when the real "storage" of learning needs restocked? And then I remember. I pray daily and read my scriptures. I try to follow God's commandments. I love the Lord and I drink in any spiritual juice I may need - to be prepared for those moments of adding to my suitcase. As long as I stay on the right track, I think I will find that I have packed enough for when eternity hits me in the face. As long as I remember the real purpose of this life on earth, I will do just fine.
Sometimes I catch myself in a rut... stuck with the wheels spinning but going nowhere. I catch myself slipping up, thinking important the things of no true importance. Thinking my pain is a petition to make everyone stop and take care of me. Thinking trivial gossip has truth. Thinking it's ok to skip scriptures for just one night. But when I get in these ruts, I remember this: I'm only packing my suitcase, and what I have in it determines my happiness. If I have packed unhappiness, lies, guilt, discouragement, and fear; then sad will be the judgment day, and regret will be my only remembrance of a life crumbling to dust. Those things don't last! But if I have packed faith, courage, strength, prayer, and service, then I will stand with no regret; prepared for the next step in my journey. And that sings sweet music to my ears. My heart is brim with joy at the thought of packing true tools that will help me in this life and whatever eternity holds. I can do this. With the Lord by my side, anything is possible. Words can't describe what I feel. I will keep on going, I will not falter. I have eternity in my sights, and I'm not letting go. Faith, strength, courage, virtue. That is my motto.