Christmas is over, the presents have been unwrapped (and maybe exchanged), and the leftovers are being polished off as we all prepare for life to kick back into high gear come January 1.
The pre-Christmas shopping frenzies have ended, but the Christmas shopping is far from over – because now the post-Christmas shopping commences!
Hundreds of stores have major post-Christmas sales to clear out their leftover Christmas inventory, marking down festive decor, wrapping paper, and apparel.
So when it comes to this post-Christmas shopping, what’s your approach?
Buy One, Buy All
It’s tempting to take advantage of these sales, and stock up on winter items for next year’s Christmas season, but keep in mind that overspending is overspending, regardless of the discount you get.
Anything and everything you purchase during a post-Christmas sale should still be part of your budget, and not strain your finances. If you have credit card debt from Christmas, DO NOT allow yourself to be tempted by the steep discounts offered after December 25. (You may also want to get in touch with Christian Credit Counselors. They can help you get out of overwhelming credit card debt, and will negotiate with your creditors on your behalf.)
Time is Money
There is also something to be said of the ongoing tension between spending the time shopping for sales vs. paying full price for an item to save yourself the time and energy.
There is an ongoing joke in the Crown office on this issue. Some of the staff don’t want to spend time looking for coupons and tracking sales in an attempt to find the best deal. The other portion enjoy the process, however, finding some sort of satisfaction in finding the best deal, kind of like winning a competition.
When there are so many stores offering good discounts like they are this week, it’s easier to find good deals on everything. If you’re planning on shopping, ensure that you and your spouse are on the same page about how much you’re spending, and on what. A Christmas ornament sale is not worth disunity between you and your spouse.
Less is More
Keep your purchases and belongings simple. It helps you save time and money, but more importantly it helps you to keep your focus on the only One who truly matters. Remember that earth is not our final destination, and you don’t get to take your house, your ornaments, or your wardrobe with you to Heaven.
Reject a spirit of comparison and seek contentment with what you have.
Pray for wisdom to know how to spend your money wisely and effectively for the Kingdom. Living simply provides more margin in your life to give generously and be used as God desires. Whatever your plans are for post-Christmas sales, remember to be a steward first and foremost. Ask yourself if you really need the items you’re shopping for, or if you’re buying just to buy. Look for ways to do good with your money this week, and keep Hebrews 12:1-2 close to your heart: “And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”