The Things of Earth
It was a sad morning. Several months ago, our neighbors were re-located to a memory care facility. Their three sons had come and gone, taking what they wanted out of the house, then turning it over to an auction company. On the morning of the auction, the auctioneers waited inside, as the crowds began to gather. Eventually, my wife and I walked over to observe the “estate sale.” As we bumped and maneuvered our way through the crowded rooms of the house, we saw strangers taking priceless possessions – paintings from the walls, coffee mugs from the cabinets, clothes from the closets, tools from the garage – things with value beyond money. I purchased a baseball cap and Joanne bought a flower vase, simple reminders of our friendship with this couple, who no longer remembered many of the details related to their possessions. When we left, I commented as to the sadness of the situation, realizing that the longer we live, the more apt we all are to reach this point – when “the things of earth grow strangely dim.” It causes me to weep. I like my possessions. They have personal, priceless, sometimes private meanings. I know that someday I will need to release them – a few things to family, most things to the crowds, perhaps some things to the trash can. And I will weep again. When I reach that day, someone please remind me of Psalm 30:5 – “Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning” – an eternal morning with no auctioneers waiting outside.