In the United States of America we have many traditions. Most of them are beautiful displays of American history, family values, and memorable moments of joy.
Then there is the day after Thanksgiving. Known as “Black Friday.” This is the day many businesses go from the red to the black on their budget ledgers. But it is also the day many of us spend more money than we should. We rush to the stores because of the advertised deals, but the store owners are ok with that. They know, if they can get us in the doors, we will likely spend more on items that aren’t such deals.
Black Friday has become kind of an embarrassment to most of us. There are thousands of videos of adults fighting over toys. Stories of people being trampled by the crowds funneling into the stores. Arguments about stores opening earlier and earlier to bring in the consumers. And many untold stories of people going in debt that could take them years to reconcile.
This unofficial holiday known as Black Friday would be fine if we all had some self-control. I hope you find the right gift for that special person, and I hope you get a good deal on the item. Nothing wrong with that. But I hope you keep perspective about it all.
The very fact that we have this kind of chaos is because we live in the richest country on the earth. You may not feel rich but according to statistics, if you are reading this on a smart phone or a laptop you are in the top 5% of the richest people on earth. You may not sense that you’re rich, because we see others with more, but you in fact are rich. If your family income is more than $10,000 a year, you are wealthier than 84 percent of the world. If it’s $50,000 or more a year, you make more than 99 percent of the world. I encourage you to do some research on how rich we really are. Many people who complain about the top 1% here in America, are in the top 1% in the world.
So today, I am asking you to stop, realize how fortunate you are and be filled with gratitude.
You may not have all you want, you may be going through a rough time financially. But you live in a place where the majority of people in the world would switch places with you instantly if given the chance. You also live in a time where the majority of the people who have ever lived would be envious.
We shouldn’t let that turn into greed, and on the other side of the coin, we shouldn’t complain like we have it so bad. We should be grateful. We are fortunate. We have opportunities people have fought and died for, we have blessings that seem unbelievable to billions of people.
Be careful to not overspend on Black Friday. Watch out for crazy people.
Whatever you do, be thankful, for where you live.
Be thankful for the time you in which you live.
Be thankful for the opportunities to bless others with what you’ve been given.