I recently read a disturbing article on what kind of damage can happen to your eyes when you spend a lot of time outdoors and don’t protect your them from sunlight, both direct and reflected light. I spend time outdoors regularly so I had a vested interest in the information.
Last week my wife and I went to the mall in hopes I could find a pair of shorts to replace the pair I ripped furiously recently (from the end of the pant seam to the crotch. don’t ask how). After finding some shorts, I was reminded that I haven’t owned a pair of sunglasses in quite a while, so with the article bouncing around my head, we stopped in a hip clothing place to see if I could spot some shades I liked.
The tricky thing is this: I have a “connection” for discounted sunglasses through a friend, so shopping for sunglasses always feels a little weird, because I have no interest in making an actual purchase, just finding a style I like.
The guy behind the corner immediately spotted us eyeballing the locked plastic case of sunglasses and hurriedly bee-lined over. Upon unlocking the case, he confessed that he liked the brand I preferred, in fact, he “had that one in every color, and a few pairs of that one too. I have a few of those down there, and I hardly ever wear this one”. This would bring his personal inventory to somewhere around 15.
In that moment, I thought 3 things:
- Wow. What in the world do you do with 15 pairs of sunglasses? Storage alone would be a nightmare.
- This guy’s personal sunglass warehouse is diminishing what little desire I had to own a pair of sunglasses. He probably meant the opposite effect, by luring me in with his confident purchases.
- I should ask to have one of his, or sneak in his house to help him with his greed problem, but maybe he alsocollects guns or rottweilers.
I quickly sorted through the display models and found one that got the thumbs-up from my wife. We made a mental note and left.
On the way out to the car I found myself doing a personal inventory of all the things I had in multiples: pants, shoes, cereal bowls, televisions, vehicles. Then a list of questions came streaming through my mind:
What do I have that I really need?
Who do I know that needs something I have plenty of?
Do I see what I have as belonging to God?
Is anything I have that I want keeping me from having what I really need?
What do you collect that you don’t need?