Jesus and Big Lots

I don’t like to shop!  Let me clarify, I love to buy stuff, but I hate shopping. Shopping is enjoyable to my wife.  She can wander aimlessly for hours and never buy anything.  What is the fun in that?  There is one store, however, that instills great joy in my soul at the very mention of its name.  This store brings out all my estrogen driven impulses and has the ability to force me into a shopping frenzy.  It is the one place that I don’t mind going simply for the thrill of the hunt.  That store is Big Lots!!!  We were just there on Thursday afternoon and we discovered so many wonderful treasures.  It is the kind of store that you can buy products for yourself, your home, your pet, your car, and your personal hygiene.  We found Popcorn in a Plastic Guitar shaped Elvis container.  Jeff Gordon sun screen. Thong underwear (in the clearance section).  The greatest find was Santa in an Outhouse that sings and makes pooting noises when you push the button.  You know we bought the Santa!  He poots out Jingle Bells! How could we resist.  

I love going to Big Lots because you never know what you are going to find.  Big Lots has been my obsession for many years now.  I can remember being forced out of the store by my mom because me and my brother were getting in trouble in the aisles.  One of the reasons it holds such a special place in my heart is because of it’s fundamental mode of operation.  They take in overstocks and refused merchandise from other places and sell them to the public.  What a great concept!  It is true that one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.  Have you ever passed an old chair on the side of the road and pondered why someone would throw that out?  Better yet, have you ever stopped to pick something up out of someone’s trash pile?  That is what Big Lots is to me.  The toy aisle reminds me of the land of rejected toys in Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer movie.

In one way or another each one of us is nothing but a reject!  We have faced rejection in our work, families and friendships.  At some point we have experienced the pain of not being “good enough” for something.  Maybe we don’t get picked first on the kick ball team.  Maybe our work tells us we are not getting a promotion.  Maybe our spouse lets us know that we are not who they thought they married.  Maybe our teenage kids are embarrassed to be around us.  The fact is that there is always going to be someone better, faster, smarter and more qualified!  Here is the good news, Jesus Christ loves rejects.  He knows what it is like to be rejected to the greatest degree. He loves us, imperfections and all.  What a great truth to wrap our minds around.  Jesus loves us when no one else will like Big Lots loves all the stuff that no one else would accept.  Now if that don’t make you warm and fuzzy…nothing will.