Attention Christmas Shoppers the days to get your final Christmas presents have arrived. It’s the mad rush, the final push, the “buy-that-dearest-love-one-something-anything” time. We are closing in on the infamous gift-card-remedy-hour (that’s when the $20-$500 Visa gift card recipient gets to see just how much you really love them. “You love me only $20 worth?” Sigh).
Before meeting Karla, I would have yawned at this date and said, “What are you talking about? I’ve got until Christmas Eve at 6PM—even later if I want to do a little shopping at Walgreens*?
Walgreens last minute shopping isn’t so bad. I’m not throwing any stones. Great grandma gets a package of extra-large depends; Uncle George gets a bottle of Listerine (make that two bottles); Mom gets cologne; Dad gets aftershave (I hope he likes Brute); and all the kids get candy (although Walgreens does have a row of toys containing playthings the likes of which no child would ever touch). Shopping at Walgreens on Christmas Eve is not out-of-the-question for the Christmas Shopping Procrastinator.
There is no shame from me towards the Christmas Eve Procrastinator. If anything, this person is a hero. Braving tough conditions (the pressure of finding the “perfect gift” as the clock is winding down); the ability to wrestle with a 83-year-old, arthritic fellow procrastinator in Walgreens over the last lawn gnome at Walgreens (Walgreens sells lawn gnomes?); and displaying the everlasting hope that Walgreens hasn’t run out of Christmas wrapping paper and tape. “Happy Birthday” gift-bags count, right? Technically, it is Jesus’ birthday. There is no humiliation coming from this direction, my friend (Karla might have a different opinion of the Walgreens last-minute shopper, but not me).
The Christmas Eve Shopping Procrastinator is in very good company. As you know the Bible’s main agenda is to get people to repent and believe that Jesus is the Son of God, the Savior of the world; and in so doing, experience the Living Water that quenches one’s deepest desires as the new believer joins with Jesus in building his kingdom on earth as it is in heaven. As the words of the Bible are coming to a close, God almighty is doing a last-ditch shopping effort to bring into the fold any procrastinator who has read the words but not yet believed.
The Bible has a grand total of 783,137 words (depending on the version used, of course). If one were to begin reading at word number 783,016 through 783,039 (the closing comments, in other words—“in other words” ha ha, pun intended). This is what the Bible says:
“Come!” Let the one who is thirsty come; and let the one who wishes take the free gift of the water of life. (Revelation 22:17)
God Almighty with the last few words in the last chapter of the last book is still aiming for that last second procrastinator. “Come,” He says, “Come.” Let the thirsty receive the free gift (see what happens there? Hey Shoppers, there’s a free gift. It’s a better offer than anything at Walgreens. It’s free. Totally free. The Living Water is free!). In the closing moments, as the clock is winding down on the Bible, with the final “Amen” in sight, God makes one last-ditch effort to save just one more. “Come all you who are thirsty. Come!”
Praise the Lord!