Getting the Mail
Getting the mail often feels like an exercise in moving paper from my mailbox to my trash can. Every once in a while something breaks through and catches my attention. That’s exactly what happened a few days ago. This one advertisement sucked me in, and even after I threw it away, has continued to haunt me. Who knew one advertisement could hold such power. Here’s the advertisement (The first pic. is from the Gap webpage, followed by the advertisement we received in the mail which I had to save from the trash for the photo):
The Jeans I’ve been dreaming of? What?! I found this ad surprising and disturbing. Over the last few days I’ve been trying to pinpoint what it is about this that affects me and I’ve come up with two reasons.
First, it reminds me how American I am. Everyone once in a while I’ll think about how different my problems are from the rest of the world. I’ll share a few of my first world problems– like when I have to decide which pair of shoes to wear in the morning and it’s hard because I have so many. Or, when I have so much food in my refrigerator that I don’t know what to eat for lunch, or so much food in my cupboard that I get frustrated trying to fit it all in. That’s hard right?! And then I saw this card. I could only think of the thousands of people in the world dreaming of things like safety, food, freedom, housing, and peace. But, here in America, we dream of…..jeans! Really! I can see why Jesus challenged us to not get so caught up in worrying about the things we owned. (Matthew 6). We’re so blessed here in America that for many people, the biggest complaint we have is the fit of our jeans! Think about all the things you complain about. How many of them are on the level of jeans?
Second, this card challenged my dreams. I hope I can dream of bigger things than nice-fitting jeans! What are my dreams anyways? My friend Rick is always challenging people to create a bucket list. I love hearing about his personal lists and all the things he’s been able to check off over the years. I’d like to write a book, go skydiving, and have something shown on America’s Funniest Home Videos. That’s an ok list to start with, but I think I can do better.
I wonder how many people simply dream of making it through another week; just trying to make it to the weekend. Our daily responsibilities surround us like a fog and it’s so hard to see past them. But if we look back 20 years from now, I hope we can say more than, “I survived.” There has to be something more important we can strive for in our life than great jeans and the weekend. I think we all can do better.
More Than Jeans
As you head out on your daily adventure to get the mail this week, I’d like you to think about jeans. You have so much to be thankful for. Instead of wondering where you’ll get your next drink of clean water, you get to worry about the next sale at the Gap. I think we can honor what we’ve been given with our dreams. Let’s dream about something bigger and better than jeans!
No, Loverboy, we’re not! We can do better!