News Articles

LifeWay Stores point to Jesus amid Christmas season bustle

NASHVILLE, Tenn (BP)–With tight budgets, overwhelming schedules, frustrating traffic and politically correct retailers replacing “Merry Christmas” with “Happy Holidays,” LifeWay Christian Stores is aiming to put the focus of Christ back into Christmas shopping.

“Our gifts this year are based on the theme ‘Jesus, Blessed Be the Name,’” Alison Stacey, a buyer for LifeWay Christian Stores, said. “We want there to be no doubt when someone walks into our stores that Christ is the main focus.”

Whether ministering to customers in the store or helping shoppers select gifts with a spiritual emphasis, LifeWay employees see the potential for eternal impact in Christmas shopping and giving in addition to increased opportunities to witness and encourage customers.

“This is the most important time for us to make an impact,” said Richard Mencer, manager of a LifeWay Christian Store in Amarillo, Texas. “So many come into the store during this time who are not Christians or who are dealing with things such as losing loved ones. This is our opportunity to share Christ and minister to those who are hurting.”

Prayer boxes are located in all 134 LifeWay Christian Stores in 23 states for customers to submit prayer requests lifted up by store employees each morning during staff devotional time.

“The church does a great job of ministering to people during this season,” Mencer said. “We are open many times when the church is not, so we can minister to people as well.”

Mencer encourages shoppers to focus on Christ while shopping this Christmas season, noting that the potential for spiritual impact does not reside within the four walls of a LifeWay Christian Store.

“As in everything, pray before you shop,” Mencer suggested. “Ask God for direction on what to buy and for guidance in your shopping.”

Customers are not the only ones praying. Before each Christmas season, LifeWay Christian Store gift buyers pray for God’s guidance in selecting themes for gifts offered to customers.

“As we prayed about this year’s themes, we decided that we wanted to focus on His name,” Stacey said. “You can see ‘inspirational’ products in the mass market, but we wanted to make sure our gifts have Christ’s name or are based on Scripture.”

Three themes emerged from the overriding “Jesus, Blessed Be the Name” premise, Stacey said: a traditional nativity theme based on Matthew 1:23; the “Believe” collection based on 1 John 3:23; and a whimsical gift line based on the song, “Jesus is the Sweetest Name I Know.” Many of the gifts are exclusive to LifeWay.

“The messages on the products can encourage other Christians or provide an opportunity to share your faith with non-Christians,” Stacey said.

LifeWay Christian Store gift cards also open the door for gifts of greater spiritual significance, Scott Chancey, a director with LifeWay Christian Stores, said.

“It is a great opportunity for Christian family and friends to select their own gift that will encourage them in their spiritual walk, or for a nonbeliever, whether it’s your neighbor or family member, to come into the store and learn about Christ,” Chancey said.

“As God works through us, He has given us biblical solutions to provide to our customers,” Mencer said. “Our heart’s desire is for people to know Christ and be spiritually transformed.”
To find a LifeWay Christian Store location or order online, visit www.lifewaystores.com.

    About the Author

  • Jenny Rice