Grace and Peace to you.
This day has come to be called “Black Friday” because in these “Christmas sales” (that have little to do with Christmas) for the first time all year many retailers sell enough stuff to get out of the “red” and into the “black.” The phrase originated in accounting departments and has become popular lingo. Consumption has become our popular religion.
On Thanksgiving we usually gather with family or close friends and eat a lot, in celebration of all that we have. So on the day after Thanksgiving, why not give energy to others who are in need or who suffer injustice? Why not observe a “commercial sabbath” on which we do works of mercy and justice? Instead of a Black Friday rooted in consumption, why not observe a Bright Friday that gives hope to a hurting world? Reach out to someone marginalized. Send a letter to Congress on behalf of the poor. Spend some time in prayer for those who are hurting. Clean up some litter. Or, if you really want to go shopping, go shopping for a local food bank or homeless program, domestic violence shelter or teen home, or a family of a prisoner. Or put together an UMCOR relief supply kit (http://www.umcor.org/UMCOR/Relief-Supplies). (Take it to a Methodist Church. They’ll know what to do with it. )
Let’s not let our Thanksgiving be all for ourselves. Now that we’ve stuffed ourselves, let’s show some actual gratitude and look to the mending of the world. Let it be a Bright Friday.
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