Thursday, October 14, 2010

Craig's List

Craig’s List can change your life in so many ways. For the past two days I’ve been purging. Not like the vomity binge and purge—the very thought of that kills me. How can people do that? I’m going through my worldly possessions and editing out all kinds of unnecessary things. A few of the things I’m selling on Craig’s List—things like extra subway tiles, a set of white china, a banjo, my daughter’s old flute, and an electric guitar amplifier. But most of the possessions I’m shedding by listing them in the “free” section on Craig’s List.

Whoa! People like free stuff. The ads hit the website and almost instantly the responses begin, like rats coming out of a woodpile. Some responders are nearly illiterate: “yes i get yur stuff wher u liv”—to them I politely answer and say the items have been claimed already. Others are tricky—they seem very sincere and eager to get the free items and then make plans to come, then they ask to reschedule, then they reschedule again, and eventually say their dog got sick and it’s dark and I live too far away. One woman rang my bell, took the electronic air cleaner, and left immediately with no conversation. A man wanted me to bring my old Subaru car mats to him in DC. I don’t deliver free stuff. One woman cancelled (after keeping me home all day waiting for her) because her son’s football game was rescheduled for Monday night. But she was coming Thursday so why was Monday a problem? Never mind, don’t ask.

But truthfully, I’ve been having such fun. Maybe I should heed the warnings of friends not to let strangers come into my house. I gave a bunch of yard tools to a woman who runs the local community center. I gave her rakes and hoes, an ax and a hatchet. So if she’s an ax murder, she’ll have lots of tools to use to come back and kill me.

This morning a lovely woman named Sandra came to pick up some area rugs. She said she wanted to do something for me in return. What could she possibly do? She wanted to pray for me and she did—she held both of my hands and did a lovely prayer of intercession, asking God to protect me and to wrap me in His love. She didn’t even know I was a Christian. But she said she knew it instinctively and felt that it was no coincidence that she came to my house today for some rugs, that it was truly the work of the Holy Spirit. I believe her and I thank the Holy Spirit for leading all these people into my life. Anyone who will pray over me is welcome.

And then there was Vince. Vince was picking up some dumbbells. He’s in the Army, posted at the Pentagon, and just moved here after tours Iraq and Afghanistan. He did bomb disposal. He’s brand new to the area and got horribly messed up in traffic trying to find my house. Let’s just say he took an interesting circuitous route that showed him what Northern Virginia rush hour traffic is like in the rain. And he never gave up, never bailed on me, just kept calling in to tell me where he was and apologizing for the delay. I guess after doing bomb disposal in a war zone the traffic here is no big deal.

So, my advice? Find something in your house that you don’t need any longer and give it to someone who can use it. It will clear your house of clutter and enrich your life in ways you can’t begin to imagine.

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