The Men of Christmas Shopping

For years I managed shopping centers. From Black Friday through December 24th, the stores are packed with shoppers looking for deals and gifts. Nothing you didn’t know, right? But what you may not know is what the men of the Christmas shopping season look like. And it’s hilarious.

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These poor guys. From the onset of the holiday shopping season through about Dec 23rd, this is the role of the guys pulled away from their tvs, recliners and snacks and drug to the mall. They become the guards of the bags. The keepers of the purses. The placeholders in lines from store to store. And then it gets worse.

Come the evening of Dec 23rd, a bell rings somewhere and the guys start to think about their own shopping. By Christmas eve the malls are packed with men walking aimlessly in search of something they either think will make “her” happy or they were instructed to find weeks ago. The forlorn looks on their faces are magnified by slumped shoulders and shuffling feet. It’s both hilarious and sad.

As a mall manager, my job was to help them. I would hire greeters to direct them to the right stores. I would walk around myself answering questions and providing encouragement. Guidance is what they needed and a lot of it. Don’t we all. As much as our mall team tried to help, there was only so much we could do. We could point, usher, answer and guide, but ultimately the guy had to complete the task himself.

It’s the same as when we talk to people about Jesus. We can point, usher, answer and guide, but ultimately the person has to make the choice on their own. This Christmas season, point people to Jesus. When they find Him, it will be the greatest gift they’ve ever received.

Merry Christmas.

Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened. Matthew 7:7-8 

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