I've been browsing the Black Friday ads for nearly a week now, scoping out all the deals and planning my strategy. Make no mistake people - if you've never dared to fight the crowds, grab for goods, and stand in an endless line, Black Friday is not the time to meander out for leisurely shopping. Oh no. This is serious business and those of us on a mission will get highly perturbed if you are clueless and in the way. Just sayin'...
Walmart boasts an 8 p.m. open time. Target will open their doors at 9 p.m. Wait a minute. That was P.M. not A.M. This is no longer a 3 a.m. wakeup call with a 4 a.m. start time. Black Friday has now infiltrated Thanksgiving Thursday.
In some ways, I admit, I'd much rather stay up and stay out late and get home at 3 a.m. instead of just getting started at that time. However, this has a very real and close-to-home impact for me this year.
You see, my dear sweet daddy now has to go to work on THANKSGIVING DAY. 3 p.m. to be exact. Why? Because McDonald's will be open for business and ready to serve hamburgers. Okay, wait just a minute. If you have no where to go to consume some morsel of turkey on Thanksgiving Day and you requre a Big Mac instead...well, we just need to talk. Don't get me wrong. Yes indeed, I posted the other day about sometimes needing a McDouble and Fry...But not on Thanksgiving.
Evenso, McDonald's will be open because all of us dedicated and devoted (crazy much?!) shoppers will be venturing out with our bellies still full. We won't be waking in the wee hours of the morning. We'll barely have time to get in a Thanksgiving Day nap before we head out to the stores.
I've been playing Christmas music for weeks...and I have every intention of putting up my tree THIS weekend (yes, BEFORE Thanksgiving). Thursday isn't celebrating a turkey (despite the just-for-fun cartoon above) or kicking off a shopping season. Thanksgiving, to me, is about ushering in a season of thankfulness and rejoicing as we count our many blessings - the main one being how thankful I am for the Savior who came to earth to make a way for me to go to His perfect Heaven. Now THAT is a reason to be thankful!
Here's what I've realized. Browsing those ads, there's not a single thing I need. Sure, there are things I'd like, even more things I think are nice. But there is not one unmet need in my life. And that is just one more reason to stop and give thanks.
So Black Friday will come early this year - just like Christmas seemed to have started in October. Whether or not you're out fighting the crowds and snatching up deals on Thursday, I pray you'll stop and give thanks. (And if you need a pick-me-up, stop and see my daddy for a Frappe!)