Today I went into WalMart for the third time this week. That is certainly a record for me, but it’s pretty convenient being that it’s only a few minutes West down HWY 90 and in the cute little town of Castroville. I want to say that I’m really not an anti- WalMart snob, but my mind just doesn’t work right in that store. I become overwhelmed with STUFF. I try to get my mind right, but once I walk through those sliding doors, my mind becomes a blur. Today was one of those days. I walked in and there are people everywhere in the same shape I’m in. We are all dealing with the brain blur. I easily made my way through the grocery section, getting everything that I needed, then I headed to the other side of the store. Now the other side is like trying to maneuver through the Amazon jungle. Tall shelves loaded down, narrow aisles, columns in the middle of those aisles, dodging workers pulling pallets of more STUFF, dodging men with shopping carts (so very dangerous), and more brain blur people stopping in the middle of the aisle in awe. I am on a mission for a 3-way outlet plug thingy, and a Command Hook for my calendar. I am going in circles for what seems to be an eternity, and finally find the two items. Whew, I am finished, time to get outta here! Then I get to the cash register and we have the dreaded bagging carousel. WalMart has come up with this nifty idea to use these bagging carousels in which they can load 50 million plastic bags onto it. Yes, that may make things easier for the cashier, but for the customer like me who no longer can focus after surviving the WalMart jungle, it’s not a good thing. I try to focus, but with so many bags and the cashier turning that carousel around and around, and all the bags looking like they have something in them or maybe not, oh my. So, I grab the bags as fast as I can as they come around my way, and load them into the cart. I ask the cashier, “Is that it, did I get everything?” “Oh yes,” he replies. I get home, unload everything, sit down for some lunch and think, “I need to get that 3-way outlet plug thingy……” Then I realize it’s not here, nor are my Command Hooks. I have left them behind on that cursed carousel. Tomorrow I will have to venture back to WalMart for a record fourth visit in a week.
This got me to thinking how life can be like a WalMart. It seems we are surrounded by so much STUFF, and when we concentrate on life’s stuff, we lose focus, we get that brain blur. Yes, we concentrate on stuff instead of concentrating on God and then life gets the best of us. We dodge the things He expects us to do, we stand in awe of something we have to face, we get lost in this crazy worldly jungle, we see things whirling around us so fast as though we are on a carousel. Then we get to a place of quiet. We look back and realize that we missed something. Maybe we missed an opportunity to witness, maybe we missed out on a chance to grow in our faith, maybe we missed out on a blessing or a need God wanted to provide, all because we weren’t focused on Him.
You will keep him in perfect peace,
Whose mind is stayed on You,
Because he trusts in You. —Isaiah 26:3