God Doesn’t Charge Baggage Fees
The first trip flying alone was stressful. Anxious about the time along with the long wait line, I was worried. Almost frantic when I finally reached the desk to check in, the attendant placed my luggage on the scale and said, “Your baggage is six pounds overweight ma’am.” With fear in my eyes and distress in my voice, I asked her, “What does that mean?”  She responds loudly, “What that means ma’am is we will have to charge you an additional fee for overweight baggage.”
Staring at her blindly I quickly try to assess my predicament. Considering the long line behind me, the horrifying thought of opening my large suitcase in front of others and the fear of missing my flight, I begrudgingly ask her, “How much?” Two taps on her monitor and she blurts out, “One hundred and twenty five dollars.”
WHAT??? Oh no! As I stare at her, my eyes glaze over as my mind goes barreling from first to fifth gear. The inward grinding getting louder and louder, screeching in my mind:
  • What do I do?
  • What will my husband think?
  • Do I even have that much money in my bank account right now?
Franticly looking for a quick answer my mind racing…..What do I do? What do I do? What do I do?
Dreading the outcome, I hand her my debit card praying I have that much in my account. Terrified of the result, my heart is racing in fear that she will hand me back my card and say it was declined.

  • I only have a five dollar bill my pocket.
  • How will I get home?
  • What do I do with all of my stuff?
  • Will my husband be mad?
  • Oh, why didn’t he come with me?
  • What if I am stuck here?
She swipes my card and the five seconds it took for an answer seemed like hours. My mind continues on its assault, this time on my character:
  • I am so stupid!
  • Why didn’t I think?
  • I shouldn’t have bought that book.
  • I should have….
  • I could have….
And my mental rampage went on.  When she hands me back my card, I cringe as I slowly lift my hand to take it. Without a word she prints out the receipt, attaches a fluorescent pink label on the handle of my suitcase that states “overweight” in big bold letters, at that point continues to slap yellow overweight labels all over my luggage.
Finally finished, I walk away spent: mentally, physically and spiritually. Much like I do with internal baggage.
Internal baggage is thoughts, habits, ideas, issues or traits that keep me weighed down. And like many, I had lugged it behind me day after day and year after year. When a bag, suitcase or trunk got too full, I acquired a new one and kept on filling.
My baggage was filled with:
  • Hurt
  • Anger
  • Fear
  • Unforgiveness
  • Bitterness
  • Pride
I tried HARD to hide my baggage. Often, I felt I was succeeding. If I just walked the straight and narrow I was unable to see behind me. And much like a child thinks, I figured if I couldn’t see it…. neither could anyone else. Yet everyone could detect the various sizes and colors (even a Gucci) of baggage rambling right along behind me.
Because I wanted the right image, to be accepted by others, and feel valued, I either tried to ignore or find a place to store my baggage. Nevertheless I learned that baggage can’t be hidden or ignored. It can only be dealt with.
Growing tired, weighted down and unable to carry on I knew it was time to deal with my excessive load. Isaiah 1:5-6 described my condition. “Why do you continue to invite punishment? Must you rebel forever? Your head is injured, and your heart is sick. You are battered from head to foot—covered with bruises, welts, and infected wounds—without any soothing ointments or bandages.” NLT
Taking God at His word, I surrendered and accepted His help. I sat down on the dusty ground and took a hold of a piece of baggage. And I began the process of:
  • Opening the bag – Several items were packed away for so long I had forgotten. However I had dragged them around for years adding unnecessary weariness.
  • Removing one item at a time – I didn’t overwhelm myself with more than one thing at a time.
  • Acknowledging what it was – I labeled each item with hurt, anger, bitterness, envy, hate, unforgiveness, or pride.
  • Considering what steps needed to be taken – I prayerfully thought out what needed to be done to deal with that particular issue or item and I admit I often needed guidance.
  • Doing it – I had to take one step in front of the other and keep moving forward.
Carrying my baggage was heavy and burdensome and it kept me from walking in freedom. God who lavished his grace and mercy on me said through Isaiah 1:18: “Come now, let’s settle this Dana, though your sins (anger, fear, pride, and unforgiveness) are stained and stand out like ruby red (for everyone to see) I will make them as white as snow. Though they are bright like fluorescent pink, (that brings attention) I will make them as white as wool.”
I have more baggage to get through, thus I am grateful that unlike the airlines…….

God doesn’t charge baggage fees!

5 thoughts on “God Doesn’t Charge Baggage Fees”

  1. Robin says:

    Wow…the most inspiring to me. Lugging around my baggage for so many years. (I have an entire matching set.) Time for a change & traveling light.

  2. Good blog,, well written & a great life example!

  3. Dana Rausch says:

    It has been quite liberating to let go of "stuff". I am learning to acknowledge baggage I hold onto for silly reasons.

  4. Dana Rausch says:

    I wished that I could have found a picture of a woman dragging numerous bags behind her, but was unable. That is the true picture I had envisioned while writing. Thank you for your encouragement.

  5. Dana says:

    Excellent visual imagery!! Loved it.

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