Ah, Black Friday. The day when thousands of people fight with and trample over others to get the latest, greatest deals. I have to wonder whose idea it was to crown the day after Thanksgiving as Black Friday. It’s an oxymoron. We spend Thursday being thankful, then Friday being greedy and discontent. What’s up with that?
Please understand, I am not belittling anyone who goes shopping on Black Friday. I used to be among those who woke up early and stood in line waiting for the stores to open. But now, many stores have extended their Black Friday deals to their online stores, so I opt to shop from the comfort of my home. It’s safer that way.
It’s not the day or the shopping with which I have a problem. It’s the attitudes. Me first. Get out of my way. He who has the most toys wins. It’s sad and pathetic to see human beings treat one another with such disrespect. And for what? The latest fad? A new computer or phone? Is it worth it? After all, when we leave this earth, we won’t be able to take any of it with us.
Would you believe me if I told you this “nothing” was the next one of my list? I couldn’t have chosen a better day than Black Friday to discuss this point. Yes, there are unbelievable deals today. Yes, it’s a great time to do some Christmas shopping. Yes, it can even be a fantastic opportunity to spend time with family. (Some of my fondest memories are Black Friday shopping with my mom and sister. My mom was there to shop. My sister and I were there to see how much we could aggravate my mom, in good fun, of course.) But as you go about the day, keep this in mind: we take nothing with us when we die. It all remains. All of it. No matter how good a deal we received, we can’t take it with us.
That being the case, how much is “stuff” really worth? Is it worth working extra hours at the office to afford the bigger television? Is it worth ignoring our family for hours on end playing with that awesome phone? In the end, we don’t even get to keep it.
But this particular nothing has an exception. Yes, I know if there is an exception to nothing, it would be something, but hear me out. When the Bible says we can take nothing with us when we die, it’s referring to stuff. Money, houses, toys, and gadgets are all left behind, and who knows what will happen to them when we’re gone? But there is one thing we can take with us to Heaven—another soul.
What would happen if we spent less time with our stuff and more time witnessing to others? How would the world change if we put down our phones, turned off our televisions, and used that time telling others about Christ? How would our conversations change if God was the topic instead of the latest and greatest sale? Our lives would make an everlasting difference! No, we can’t take our stuff with us, but we can be reunited with those who made it to Heaven because of our witness.
Again, I’m not condemning shopping or having nice things, but I am reminding all of us to make sure we have our priorities straight. This life—with all its stuff—is temporary. Heaven, on the other hand, is eternal. What are we doing here on earth that is making a Heavenly difference?