On this so-called Black Friday, Contemplative Thomas Merton gets it right:
“Why should I worry about losing a bodily life that I must inevitably lose anyway, as long as I possess a spiritual life and identity that cannot be lost against my desire? Why should I fear to cease to be what I am not when I have already become something of what I am? Why should I go to great labor to possess satisfactions that cannot last an hour, and which bring misery after them, when I already own God in His eternity of joy? It is the easiest thing in the world to possess this life and this joy; all you have to do is believe and love; and yet people waste their whole lives in appalling labor and difficulty and sacrifice to get things that make real life impossible.” (New Seeds of Contemplation, 159-160)
Blogger friend John Piippo writes: If everyone who says they are a Jesus-follower actually “learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want” (Philippians 4:12), then Black Friday would be morphed into Good Friday, since all the striving that happens during the American folk-Christimas would be gone. Of course, should this actually happen, the entire American economy would be in ruins, since in America we must spend to keep the ship afloat. But, following Merton, real life would then be possible. Because deep, lasting things like family, friends, and joy are endangered by ad infinitum striving that grows out of a discontented spirit.