Bright Shiny Love

Published 3:39 pm Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Written by, Jan Penton-Miller

Wouldn’t you know it? Two of the shelves on my refrigerator door cracked almost simultaneously and had to be discarded. I stewed over this for a while and within a few weeks a plan began to formulate in my mind. My first thought was to put this old hunk of junk in the garage and purchase a new fridge.

I thought about that for a while, but then an even better idea came to me. Why not just chuck all the appliances and get new upgraded ones? The dishwasher isn’t quite as quiet as the newer models, and with two new appliances then the stove would be a little of a mismatch.

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That sounded like a fine idea especially since the Black Friday sales are still in full swing making me wonder why they stick to the name. Black Friday. Cyber Monday. Who knows what marketing ploy will be next? We are an abundantly blessed people, and sometimes the bright shinies hit even the most grounded consumer.

Sunday’s sermon encouraged us to have a truly memorable Christmas. It’s the season of celebrating the birth of the Savior of the world. All the bells and whistles, the push for perfection, and the stress we put upon ourselves to purchase expensive gifts all have very little to do with that silent night so long ago.

What does all that have to do with buying new appliances you may ask. It just dawned on me this morning that my appliances were totally fine. I looked on the Internet and ordered the two broken shelving units for a little over one hundred dollars including shipping. They will arrive this week and are simple to install. 

In reality, I would have wound up spending thousands of dollars partly because the appliances were on sale and the bright shinies hit me when I wasn’t paying attention. Of course, there is absolutely nothing wrong with buying new things, but I feel just fine knowing I saved that money that may now be used on something more important.

One year when I was much younger I had a little extra money and wanted to bless someone with it. I prayed and asked God to show me whom to help, but no answer came. I felt that there was someone specific who needed this money, although by most people’s standards it was a very small sum.

Christmas was just ahead, and I was beginning to wonder if I was really supposed to give this, but I kept praying for clarity. I was in Wal-Mart returning something when I overheard a woman almost in tears at the service desk. Immediately, I knew this was the one I had prayed for. The money tucked away in my wallet was just enough to help her, and I’m sure we both never forgot the moment.

It’s been too long since I’ve prayed for that stranger. I hope this reminds us all that there are people all around that need a little bright shiny love.