I was waiting for my luggage at the airport recently and I made an interesting observation: I think about 90 percent of travelers have black luggage. If you have a black suitcase on wheels, forget about just reaching out, grabbing it off the belt and rolling on your way. Just try it and you could very possibly get mugged by a dozen or so other black-luggage-lugging passengers. I had to take my husband’s black luggage on a trip one time, and I lost two nails in a bad black suitcase scene. I think I still have a couple of emotional scars from that one. Talk about emotional baggage.
It was actually pretty funny when I watched it this week. Tons of luggage was sliding down to the carousel and every time the crowd spotted a black, wheeled bag coming down the pike, the entire mob leaned in as one. It was a little freaky. As the bag got closer, they would all circle around it like oversized vultures.
Three or four would reach for it to try to check the tags. Then there were several awkward smiles. And then for that one person (who had probably already reached for the wrong bag a good dozen times), it would be sort of like when you guess the right price from contestant’s row and get to go up on stage. Ding, ding, ding! “I won! It’s mine!”
This time I got to simply stand back and observe. Why? Because my luggage is green. Not just green, but green with flowers. And if that’s not distinctive enough, I’ve tied a white scarf in a giant bow around the handle. I can identify my luggage before it’s even all the way down the chute. Never a doubt. I always know when mine is coming.
Jesus knows us that way. He can see us coming. How it fills our lives with hope when we’re assured that we are identified as His.
The Bible tells us that everyone who is born of God wins. 1 John 5:4 says, “For everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith.”
There’s even more dark stuff in this world than there is dark luggage. But for those of us who’ve by faith given our lives to Christ, there’s a bright and shining hope that is our ultimate victory. It’s brighter than the brightest green luggage and more distinctive than any white bow. You can say, “I won! Victory is mine!” Hope is instant once we understand what it is to become that green-flowered bag in a black suitcase world.
So go ahead. Check the name tag. If you’re His, your name is written in the Lamb’s Book of Life. It’s settled. Never a doubt. The suitcase is yours. It’s a bag that comes packed full of all the hope you’ll ever need to carry you joyfully through this life journey.
And this is actually one of those times when it’s good to be left holding the bag.