CRAZY. That is the only way to describe it.
I've been on the shopping end of things on Black Friday before. Only to get the $2 movies that Walmart has had in the past, but still. As a shopper you only witness your little area of the store while purchasing items.
As a worker you see the madness from a different view.
First of all, I'm saddened by the fact that many stores are now opening on Thanksgiving. Every store that is open on Thanksgiving needs employees to work. How selfish is it for a store to pull people away from their families on a special day just to earn some extra money. Profits surely go before people at these businesses.
They are called Black Friday sales for a reason - they used to be held on FRIDAY! Now shopping is invading a day that was meant to express our thankfulness. This is incredibly sad.
Second, I know that it's awesome to get a good deal. I know that some people do Black Friday shopping with family and friends as a fun outing. I get that.
But as a worker I saw people trampling over merchandise. Pulling things from the pallets so quickly that the pallet displays collapsed. Filling their carts with things that could only be described as last minute purchases of junk. Pulling out credit cards to charge all this "stuff", putting them into debt for months or years even. It became, literally, disgusting.
Luckily, no one here got in a fist fight or trampled over people. They seemed to be aware that the people around them were more important than a "good deal" (even the drunk people were more....err...."cozy" than crazy). Yet, people have lost their lives in the past at these shopping events. Being trampled to death in the name of shopping just doesn't seem worth it to me.
I was already feeling odd about Christmas this year. Decided to make it more about "Christ" than presents several months ago. Seeing this madness only reiterated that feeling for me.
While I walked out of the store into a jam packed parking lot, surrounded my people pushing cartloads of stuff, my heart was heavy and I seriously felt like crying. Yet I also felt thankful. Thankful that I have enough.
For the next month my goal is to help others...whether that be charities, people I know in my own life, or complete strangers. That will be my Christmas gift to myself...to see Christ in everyone around me and to ask Christ to help me see a need that someone else may have. One doesn't have to be rich to do that - whether it be bringing a plate of goodies to a lonely neighbor, writing a card to someone who may need a lifting up, donating items to those in need (both humans and animals), there are actual needs around us.
For that lesson, I suppose I was thankful for Black Friday.