Jesus and I are on an outing the week before Easter. We pull up to a strip mall; He unbuckles his seatbelt and I turn off the ignition. As we climb out of the car and walk towards an open door He remarks, “Oh, a Christian bookstore; let’s see what they’re selling.”
We step inside and nearly run into a banner displaying “Resurrection Eggs.” The tabletop displays cardboard cartons with plastic egg-shaped containers inside. A sample shows Scripture verses tucked inside. “How are these used?”
He ponders, puzzling as he holds one in His hand. “They’re eggs. Are they for farm children? And why are they called ‘Resurrection Eggs’? I wasn’t hatched on Easter morning.”
He has a point. I hesitate.
“Well, Lord, they’re witnessing tools. Kind of a combination of the pagan traditions around Springtime mixed with Biblical truths.”
“Oh…I wonder why they had to mix things up like that. The truth can stand on its own. Why did they have to put it in such a fancy package?”
I have no answer.
Jesus picks up other items–a Resurrection banner, “Jesus Lives” on a keychain fob, “Happy Easter” emblazoning a coffee mug.
“I see they’re made in China. Actually, everything’s made in China–are there that many Christians in China, to make all this?”
He sweeps his arm through the air, surveying the store.
“Well, Lord, the labor’s cheaper there so it’s a wise use of money, I guess.”
“Cheap labor? “I didn’t die for that.”
We peruse the shelves and I mention names of friends who’ve written a book or two. We look for their titles in the front of the store but have to wander a few aisles before we get to the Christian Living section.
“Why are there sections?” Jesus asks. “Isn’t it all Christian Living?”
The book titles intrigue and surprise Him.
He pulls down a volume titled, “Wounded by God’s People.”
“Oh, I’ve heard of this author. I know her father, Billy. I gave him many, many messages to share with the world and he always went wherever I asked him to. He always told people how I loved them so.”
A sad look comes over his face as he fingers the title. ‘Wounded by God’s People.’ “I didn’t die for that.”
We look around for my friend’s book. I mention her name–Jennifer. “She used to be a reporter in Iowa,” I tell Him.
“Oh, I remember giving her that book to write. She decided to call it ‘Love Idol’. Let’s go see if they have it.”
We turn to the Women’s Section, thinking the little yellow book should be there.
“Again with the sections,” he laments. “Why all these divisions? I died for everyone.”
We ask a clerk about the title I’m looking for; Christ’s eyes widen at the response.
“We couldn’t stock the book, I’m sorry. It has the word ‘idol’ in the title.”
“But this is a Christian bookstore, right? Where you want to shine a light on sin and tell the truth, right? That’s what her book is about–setting people free.”
The puzzled clerk simply repeats, “I’m sorry, sir, we can’t carry it.”
I can tell the Lord has had enough.
“Maybe we should go,” I suggest.
Jesus agrees and decides He won’t purchase anything, having paid for it all already.
As we walk out the door and look towards the lightening sky over the cars He mentions the days ahead, Easter on the horizon.
One thought on “Christian Bookstore, Holy Week”
Christian book stores are depressing places, dangerous even. You’ve captured it well.