"Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father." Paul to the persecuted at Philippi (2:5-11)

25 November 2011

China Boycott, year two, day one.....

Thus begins my "Black Friday" to Christmas boycott of everything made in China, for the second year. I strongly encourage you all to participate in this! Last year resulted in fewer gifts, but all thought out, fun to give and interesting, elegant offerings. It made sense, to think about what we're doing, do less of it, and offer gifts to our loved ones which reflect our love for them rather than expressing our credit limits.

I drove by the local WalMart on the way back to my mother's house from my inlaws' Thanksgiving dinner. We'd stayed late at auntie-in-law's house (because my inlaws are frankly too much fun for words; these folks should have to come with a warning label) and as we drove by the WalMart parking lot at almost 11:00 pm on Thanksgiving we could see that the lot was already full, not just crowded or busy but space by space from close to the farthest corner of the concrete jungle, full. Full of people mindlessly giving up a relaxing family time, replete and mellow with dinner's afterglow, whose families are obviously not fun enough to wear warning labels in their estimation, who failed to take the time to enjoy one another. Full of people mindlessly looking for deals, submitting to marketing, being flooded with Christmas mutations that scream over stuff. Full of people pouring dollars into China, forced abortions, environmental sabotage, sweatshops, and abused North Korean refugees, in order to buy cheap plastic junk that will collect dust until it breaks and joins the rest of the holiday hoorah in the local landfills. Greedy people encouraging greedy industry at every level.

Whatever your political drum, mindless merchandise is societal death. It brings out the worst in us.

Will I shop today? probably not. But I might venture out. My mother has found a small local shopkeeper, a candle seller here in Knoxville, who expressed to her in casual conversation that she's no longer carrying merchandise made in China. I don't know about buying anything, but I think we may venture over. I'd like to meet her. Thank her. And if the product suits, I might even financially support her courage by buying a few appropriate gifts there.

Other gifts, for those of you who would like to follow in my tracks from last year, have come from the Hunger Site for lovely gifts that give back and Shepherd's Flock a locally grown business where you can actually get to know the people who make the things that keep your toes and ears warm.

So happy hunting. Enjoy the sport of it. Give gifts that give back. Think about those you love. And glorify God in the giving. Anything less is not worthy of the joy and mystery of the Christmas that's coming.

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