Monday, August 25, 2008

Hold On Loosely

Six years ago, I was working in Little Rock, Arkansas and in need of a new briefcase. I began the search for the new manly accessory, a search that was likely to last months as I sorted through the vast array of attache options.

While walking through the office one day, I began admiring the over sized man purse of a co-worker friend of mine, Wes Ward. After a few days of contemplation, I asked him where he bought it and he said "Here, you can have it. I have another one at home." Have it? Really?

This is briefcase: (Notice the lovely embroidered logo that attracts attention from other business travelers in the airport).

When I asked him why he was willing to give it up, and he told me this story: "When I worked at Moody, I complimented one of my co-workers ties. He immediately took it off and gave it to me, commenting that he had plenty of other ties at home that he didn't wear. I've often thought of that experience and wondered if I could hold loosely to my possessions in the same way he did."

This example of selflessness inspired Wes to do the same with others. And his example was a humbling encouragement to me. It wasn't long after that when a friend of mine admired a small pocket knife I was carrying at church. I had PLENTY of other knives at home, so I knew right then I could give it to him, and it was a great delight to do so.

Now the old "Ambassador" briefcase has run it's course and I was overwhelmingly pleased with it, but wanted more space. So when my parents called and said they wanted to buy me a new briefcase, I went with this one:

Here's the comparison:

Here's the question for you, and thus the point of this post. Are you prepared to give away that special item you just can't do without (even though you have three more at home) the next time someone asks about it? Try it, and you'll be amazed at the joy you'll find from holding loosely to your possessions.


John and Pam said...

Great story, John, but we have not yet received back your signed pledge that the new brief case will not be put in a yard sale or given away for at least five years.

Mom & Dad

John C. Majors said...

oops. Too late. I gave to the UPS man. He looked like he needed something to help him cary things.