Affectionately termed “Black Friday” by U.S. consumer retailers and popularized by the media, the day after Thanksgiving is the official launch of the retail holiday season. It is the day that retailers hope that sales will put their businesses in “the black,” rather than “the red” and is supposed to be an economic indicator of the entire holiday shopping season.
Retailers know the allure of a sale, the ongoing state of the average American’s pocket book, and the inherent tendency of human nature to buy what we do not need but wished we had. Black Friday has become a quintessential hallmark of American consumerism.
Last December, I found myself almost entrapped with the same magnetic pull of a great sale for a flat screen television. Only one problem…our very old TV still worked (although had/has its quirks). We really did not need a new TV. The barrage of sale advertisements did not make it easy to decline.
Don’t get me wrong. I like a sale just like anyone else and enjoy the pleasure of giving gifts to family and friends at Christmas. However, I also recognize the seduction of “more,” “bigger,” “better,” and “quicker.” Entrapment to bigger and better is one of the most accepted forms of cultural bondage ~ inside and outside the American church. Read the rest of this entry »