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Tuesday, June 15, 2010

A Wartime Mentality

My mom has always been good for an old saying or two. Most of them were things that she had picked up from her grandmother and consequently didn't seem to have much relevance for me. One saying in particular came from a famous World War II poster that urged Americans to "Use it up, Wear it Out, Make it Do or Do Without." I can imagine hearing this when I was younger and rolling my eyes. Now, however, it rings with much more significance. As our family attempts to Do Without some things, we are forcing ourselves to Make Do.

It is ironic, I suppose, that we have been telling our children this very thing for years now. Whenever one of them has had an issue that we couldn't deal with at the moment, we would say "Well, you'll just have to make do." For context, imagine we are walking into church and someone suddenly feels they are hungry and quite possibly might cease to exist before we reach the end of the parking lot. This is a classic 'Make Do' scenario. Usually preceded by this same person playing through breakfast rather than eating and suddenly, upon seeing the church in front of us, realizes they have at least a couple of hours before lunch and only a quart-size helping of Goldfish crackers that they will receive upon entering their Sunday School class to see them through. So now they are hungry, but we tell them they will have to just make do. Not sure how that translates in the mind of a 4 or 6 year old. Perhaps they think this means eat your shoes if necessary, but they have come to understand that further requests will similarly be denied.

Not sure why, but this reminds me of Jesus as he was telling his disciples how they should plan to head out into the world. He tells them in Matthew 10:9-10
9 Acquire no gold nor silver nor copper for your belts, 10no bag for your journey, nor two tunics nor sandals nor a staff...

Basically he's telling them to make do. They themselves are the only equipment that he is requiring and the rest will, of course, be taken care of. As we learned recently in our family trip to the beach - a car full of stuff can be more trouble than it's worth. Pack light on life's journey, don't get distracted by the frivolous stuff, and keep focused on what's important. He'll take care of the important stuff.


Joshua Goodling said...

Excellent statement - "Pack light on life's journey, don't get distracted by the frivolous stuff, and keep focused on what's important."

I like that!