Winning the Lottery

I tend to do a lot of shopping at the big container stores. You know—places like Costco and Sam’s Club. These eclectic Pandora’s boxes can often be a simple answer for the one-stop-shopper (as many of you have, no doubt, already discovered).

Stores like this tend to have a lot of everything. Well, maybe not everything. But at least they tend to have a goodly amount of a wide variety of stuff. One thing they always seem to have is clothing. The selection is usually limited, but the prices are good.

There Are Drawbacks

Unfortunately, one of the drawbacks to using stores like Costco as your personal haberdashery is sizing. Recently, I was low on shorts for the upcoming summer season. I headed out to Costco, which is often my go-to place for such items. Sure enough, there were piles of men’s mini-pants just lying there for the asking (well, for the purchasing).

The sign above them said, “Men’s Calvin Klein Shorts—Sizes 30 to 68.” True to form, I could not find my size. Sifting through five hundred pairs of anything can be exasperating. It’s even more maddening when you’ve finished your search only to discover your size is nowhere to be found.

That’s exactly what happens to me about 95% of the time. So when I actually do find my size, I consider it about the same as if I had won the lottery. Then, of course, I have to take them home to try them on. (As you know, there are no fitting rooms in such places.) If they actually fit, I feel like I’ve won the Powerball sweepstakes. Can we say, “Jackpot,” boys and girls?

A Strategy to Win

I was at Sam’s Club recently and overheard a senior citizen describing his shopping strategy. He said the following. “When I find something I like, I pick up two or three different sizes and several colors. I take them home, try them on, and bring back the ones that don’t fit or I don’t like.” That’s a pretty solid strategy. Dollars to donuts, the one you’ll need or want won’t be there when you return, so take them all on the first run. (It’s like buying a block of lottery tickets hoping you might hit on one.)

My strategy is much simpler. When I’m standing over an entire lot of shorts (or other types of garb), I pray. Some people pray to win the State Lottery. I pray to win the Sam’s Club lottery.

This makes perfect sense to be sure. Check out the Scripture. We often see Jesus slipping away to a quiet place to pray. Only in a couple of those instances are we told what He was praying. In the Garden of Gethsemane for instance (Matthew 26:36-43) or His High Priestly Prayer (John 17:20-26)…

All the other times, we are left in the dark. Could it be He once prayed for the right sized Seder tunic at the Jerusalem Costco? Just conjecture, but I’ve heard God works in mysterious ways.

[Dave Zuchelli is a graduate of Pittsburgh Theological Seminary and currently resides in Aldie, VA.]

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