I was Googling for something completely different this morning, and I found this blog article about what people are toting in their totes. Then I looked over at mine…my Eddie Bauer messenger bag, with one missing clip.

Just for kicks and giggles, and because I’m getting more interested in simplifying and cleaning out, I decided to take a look in my bag.

First, I weighed the crazy thing! As it sits right now, it weighs an incredible 22 pounds! Mind you, that’s not including a laptop computer. That’s just books and junk! Hardly what one would call “portable” and “mobile!”

Here’s a quick inventory…

Outside flap, zipper pocket:

  • User’s manual for cell phone

Inside flap, zipper pocket:

  • The Imitation of Christ
  • The Book of Common Prayer
  • UPS shipping receipt for a wedding gift from June 2004
  • Revlon nail buffer stick

Main compartment:

  • Day-Timer planner, 8.5 x 5.5 (approx.) size
  • Holy Bible, New Living Translation (Premium Slimline Large Print edition)
  • Shackleton’s Way
  • Dangerous Intersections
  • Why Leaders Can’t Lead
  • Flannery O’Connor Collected Works (Library Copy)
  • The Organized Executive
  • The Effective Executive
  • Organizing for the Creative Person
  • Reimagining Spiritual Formation
  • Good to Great
  • Simpy Strategic Stuff
  • Execution: The Discipline of Getting Things Done
  • one penny

Inside “file folder-size” zipper compartment:

  • “Civic Art and the City of God: Traditional Urban Design and Christian Evangelism” article printed from Web
  • Seth Godin blog articles about “the echo chamber” printed from Web
  • Esquire (October 2004 issue)
  • GQ (August 2004 issue)
  • Men’s Health Best Life (September/October 2004 issue)
  • Zagat supplement to Esquire (Fall 2004 issue)
  • Chapter 6, torn from Paul Powell’s Death from the Other Side (used in a funeral message)
  • “Listening to God” (anonymous article)
  • printed prayer guide from our midweek service, dated July 7
  • North Central News (Association newsletter, July 2004 issue)
  • advertising articles from MUST Ministries (dated June 2004)
  • Community Assessment Profile (demographic information) for 3- and 5-mile radius of Stonecrest Baptist Church
  • various state convention “ministers’ mailing” stuff from June 2004
  • LeaderLife (Summer 2004 issue)
  • Fast Company (July 2004 and August 2004 issues)
  • hard copy of email about church announcement to be included in printed bulletin, dated August 30, 2004
  • mortgage information folder
  • God With Us music book
  • Stonecrest Deacon Family Ministry folder
  • phone number list, dated August 23, 2003
  • file folder with notes about various subjects and receipts
  • God With Us CD
  • one quarter, three nickels, two pennies

WOW! No wonder I feel like I’m carrying weight of the world on my shoulders. Sometimes I am!

I wonder why I jam all that stuff in there and carry it from place to place.

First, it’s probably symptomatic of my general unorganized laziness. If I throw it in the bag, it’ll be somewhere out of sight. But it’s probably got something to do with my wanting to look like I’m important/smart/somebody/whatever.

What’s in your bag?

Oh, I’m culling through the pile right now. An update will follow…