Shopping is my Ministry

God’s Word tells us in First Corinthians 10:31, “Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all for the glory of God.” Giving all to the glory of God seems more natural when doing what we love, and for me, that’s shopping! Please don’t misunderstand; while I love to shop, it is the amazing ministry opportunities that drive my passion to shop for His purposes.

After concluding our business in Franklin Tennessee a few days ago, I persuaded my husband to stop by the Cool Springs Mall for a little shopping. After meandering through a few stores, shopping and sharing my love for Christ, I sensed God directing me to the shoe department in a large anchor store. Weaving my way to and fro through the busy shoe department, my feet found their way to the comfort section of the massive store. Naturally you may think it was the long hours of walking which brought me to the comfortable shoes, but it was God’s plan for me to be there precisely for that moment in time.

My searching was over! They were cute, stylish, and had a heel height that was just right! To top it off, they were crimson red! This was the style of shoe I wore when teaching models for hours and hours in Omaha, and they were so comfortable. As I was admiring the shoes, waiting for the sales person to return with my size, another shopper walked up beside me and picked up the shoe right beside the one I had chosen. I guess I must have looked like a radiant sunbeam because she started a conversation.

She began, “My friend says if you try these shoes you will never buy another brand, they are so comfortable. The shoes you have chosen are really cute.” After a brief discussion, and discovering we wore the same size, I suggested she give my shoes a try. She laughed and said she couldn’t possibly wear that style because of the pain in her knees. She admitted gaining weight over the last few years and the extra weight was causing some problems with her knees. She reminisced about a time many years ago when she worked out, but after going to work, and having children, sacrifices were made and she began to neglect her own body. In turn, she walked around with extra weight, along with a heavy heart, from circumstances that had occurred in her personal life.

As I continued listening, my ears felt like they were on fire and my body a furnace on high heat! God sometimes turns up my temperature a few degrees when he wants my attention, especially when He is going to do what only God can do; you know, heart work. God gave me an opportunity to share my passion for keeping our bodies fit for Christ. I shared with her how I help people get back on track with their bodies, and their relationship with God.

Our conversation attracted the attention of a few other ladies in the high end shoe department. Some of the ladies began to interject their own experiences of being in good shape, but then gaining weight, and no longer being able to wear the kinds of shoes they used to wear. I listened and asked God how to deliver His message of hope through encouragement, offering motivating and necessary changes to help get them to return to His pathway in their physical and spiritual health, and without condemnation. He is faithful to answer our calls, and once again, He did not disappoint.

The busy store gave us extra time to talk, and we took a seat beside one another, waiting for the sales lady to bring our shoes. I shared some ways to help her get back on track. My new friend started sharing her story of divorce and being single for ten years. I could tell the bouts of loneliness had been hard for her, and she longed to be married once again. I shared my own testimony of being divorced, and after praying for five years, God was faithful by providing a God fearing man to be my husband. Tears welled up as she explained her relationship with Christ has not been as good as it should be.

The sales lady brought our shoes, and as we bent over trying them on, I told her that God knows the desires of her heart, and if she desires to be married, then He will answer those prayers. But, I explained that our relationship with God is more important than the desires we have in our heart. God will answer those desires in His timing, and when we are ready for them to be answered. Not when we are ready but when God says we are ready. I then paused and asked God to help me with sharing his message for my new friend.

Presenting His message with love and hope, I began directing her to Second Chronicles 7:14 which says, “If my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their sins, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.” I told her, “That is us. We are God’s people; we are called by His name. God is speaking to each of us. We need to go to God, open our heart, and ask him to open our eyes to our sin. And then we need to repent from our sinful ways.”

What are we watching, reading, doing, and saying; do they glorify God or satisfy our desires? We must not allow ourselves to be conformed to the standards of this world. We are a chosen people, set apart. Remember, we may be the only Jesus the world may ever see.

God does not point out our sin for condemnation, or to make us feel bad about ourselves, but he does as any loving parent would do, correct us before we burn our hand on hell’s door. When the Holy Spirit brings conviction to our hearts’, we ask forgiveness. We do not blame others; we take responsibility for our actions, and ask God to forgive us. It is that simple.

I explained to my friend some of my own past mistakes and how God had forgiven me. While I was not sure how she would handle my direct words, I knew God wanted me to share them with her. We were standing up at this point, testing our new shoes, and she turned to me with tears running down her cheek and said, “Can I give you a hug!”

I traveled south from Calhoun, and she came north from Louisiana. God brought us together in the shoe department of a major retailer in Franklin Tennessee at precisely the moment he prescribed. It was a divine appointment. Supernatural! Who would have thought it; a black lady and a white lady talking about the Lord trying on comfortable shoes?

So, whether shopping or simply performing your daily endeavors, walk boldly in the spirit of thankfulness, and be prepared to testify to the mercy and grace God has bestowed in your life. Because, we do it all for the glory of God!

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