There is a new film on limited release. The Finnish film-maker works from the premise that all his possessions are put into storage and he is allowed to retrieve one item per day.

I found myself thinking about this. Here in the First World we live in a life of things, we complicate our lives with technology, with things that are important to us, possessions that make our lives easier. It is easy to question our need for these material possessions, to feel that our lives might in some way be simpler without these, but can this be so? I open any drawer or cupboard and see things that I might not have used for years but still have utility.

Jesus may have sent out his disciples without possessions but can we go out without smartphone? One of the joys for me of travel to the Outer Hebrides is the lack of not only 3G coverage but in large part any phone signal at all. I was sad to hear that the main criticism that those offering accommodation on the Islands receive is the lack of WiFi! They are now talking about making this a virtue – offering “digital detox” holidays.

Returning to the film, I started to think what would I retrieve? Probably a pair of trousers first, then food and a blanket. Food, shelter, warmth – life can be that simple. I might recover my smartphone at the end of the second week!


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