As I’ve said in one of my stories here, money is a good servant. Ecclesiastes says money is a shelter as wisdom is. Shopping is one way of making money serve you, so I always tell people to earn more money so they can go shopping now and then. God wants us to enjoy living with him and he created the entertainment called shopping in aid of life enjoyment. Some people think shopping is worldly. Well, even bible studies can be “worldly” if used for the wrong reasons. The same goes for shopping.
I’m not too keen on shopping except when I and my wife sometimes do it. Sometimes we save money, sometimes we make it serve us. Even if you were as spiritual as we are, you encounter challenging times in life, even down times. One way you take a break from damaging stress for a while is shopping with God. It’s therapeutic. If you want to be safe from high blood pressure, heart problems, or insulin resistance, just shop. Shopping has lots of health and fitness benefits, especially if you walk fast, use the mall stairs, and snack healthily. That’s how you use money to shop with God and feel better.
“Shop with God?” The idea may not sound good with religious folks, thinking that if you want closeness with God you have to live a boring life with him. Nothing is farther from truth. God is exciting to be with and you can actually join him shop around malls. He is everywhere, isn’t he? He can even be found in beer houses and notorious motels, convicting people of sin. He also shops.
I and my wife shop with God at times. Sometimes, I shop with him alone. You go around malls aimlessly, look around, watch people, scan books, appreciate food and cakes and ice creams, scout for gadgets, search for new sports equipment and handy weapons. You find a cozy place to eat and you sample some interesting dish or dessert. Simple things like that. You may even find a good piece to buy. It makes you take your mind off problems and relax a while with God, gathering enough renewed energy and enthusiasm and readying yourself for another round of life.
Going out to the great outdoors is the ideal but you don’t have that in the city. What you have are great malls and department stores and fast food stores–and bookstores (my favorite). In times you feel discouraged, use God’s resources made available to you–money. And make money serve you. You may feel down now and then, but there’s no reason in the world why you should give up when God has made available everything to perk your energies up again–spiritual and otherwise.
Just don’t be worldly. Shopping and worldly are two very different things. Too much of one or the other can lead to one or the other. Just shop to unwind and relax a while, not shop till you drop–and almost everyday at that. Can you imagine Jesus shopping? Then be that kind of a shopper. I can easily imagine him shopping, checking out new shirts and pants, seeing what’s the latest in shoe fashion, or some new shades. If you want to unwind and release pressure off your head, then shop with him.
The picture above is “Kultura Filipino,” which is a great shop to take your balikbayan relatives and friends to. They offer native handicrafts, accessories, clothes, souvenirs, Philippine flags, and others. I and my wife took her brother there recently and I enjoyed looking at the freshly made barong tagalog, souvenir pens and desk decors, Philippine themed shirts, and also enjoyed the tropical fruit juices offered for free. I especially loved the taste of Mangosteen juice. My wife and her relatives were busy looking at clothes and caps while I was busily sampling the fruit juices like a crazy winebibber. I so love fresh fruit juices.
That simple visit to Kultura made my day. I and my wife and kids–and my 10-month old grandson–later had dinner at KFC and went home all charged up and enjoying fresh new family bonding which we have day to day anyway. But the Kultura trip at SM North gave it a big boost further. That’s what money and shopping are for.