Have you ever researched the history of pillows? I have. Well, I kind-of-sort-of have. I looked it up on Wikipedia. Did you know that “pillows were originally made by wealthy men in Asia?” Did you know that early pillows were considered art? Pillows became such an art form that “highly decorated pillows were prized commodities first in China and Persia and later in Medieval Europe.” And here’s another random fact about pillows, “traditional Chinese pillows were made from stone, wood, metal, or porcelain.” OUCH! (source)
Why should we care about this? Here’s why.
This morning I decided to make the bed. I pulled up the sheets, smoothed out the down comforter, and began strategically placing our decorative pillows. Including the two we sleep on, my wife and I have nine pillows, NINE! A few hundred years ago my wife and I would have been considered rich and luxurious art collectors just because we had decorative pillows. When people came over to our house, we would have walked them upstairs and let them gaze upon our newest pieces of art – and maybe, if they were lucky and nice enough, we would even let them squeeze a pillow or two.
What if I did that today? What if some friends came over and I told them, “You all have to see this! Check out how many pillows we have!” How do you think they would respond? Would they be amazed? No! Because we all have lots of pillows.
Again, you are probably wondering why this is important. It’s important because most of the time I feel poor. I look around and see other people with stuff I don’t have, and I either covet or become unsatisfied with my life. Instead of seeing my life as luxurious – which it is – I see my life as lacking.
Have you ever stopped to think about the fact that you have a comfortable bed? How many times have you heard someone say (or have you said) – especially after a long trip – “I missed my own bed” or “I love my bed?” We live in luxury. We are surrounded by pillows.
Unfortunately, we have let advertisers hijack our view of luxury. By applying it only to the fanciest cars, the fanciest furniture, and the fanciest foods – they have stripped us of that appreciation and joy. Instead of us going home each day and thinking about how luxurious our lives are, we focus on the fact that we have a 1997 money green Toyota Corolla instead of a brand new Mercedes Benz. Instead of enjoying our clean drinking water from the tap, we want a bottle of Don Perignon. This video explains it better than I ever could!
We have completely forgotten about our pillows.
Around 9% of people in the world own a car. That puts me and my 1997 Corolla in the top 10% of the world’s population. That makes my 1997 Corolla a luxury. Almost a year ago I was in Honduras touring homes without beds. One family of four slept on a twin sized bed and didn’t have any pillows. Another family of three only had 1 pillow. That makes me – the guy with nine pillows – rich and luxurious.
So tonight, when you lie down on your bed thank God for your pillow. It wasn’t so long ago that your pillow was a sign that you were wealthy. And if you’re like me, and you struggle with a “poor” complex, remember that your life is full of luxury.
Who would have thought I could learn so much from making the bed?
How many pillows do you have? Comment below and continue the discussion…