Here’s a little personal weirdness I’ll share. I’m not really fond of shopping. In fact, the only day of the year I enjoy going to the shopping mall is Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving. And I don’t even shop with the intent to buy. I drive around the parking lot several times trying to find a parking space, walk around each floor once, and then leave. Don’t even buy anything. Just want to experience shopping on Black Friday. But I love it. Yeah, I know, I am super weird.
It makes me think of the daily interactions when I worked in Dallas. There’s just something about the busyness, the crowds, the decorations, and the experience of being in a place where so many people interact. I experienced this when I worked on one of the higher floors of a Dallas skyscraper. Upon entering the lobby, businesses were open and ready for customers: a bank, a florist, a convenience store, and a couple of cafés.
This connects to ancient times and the activities as one enters the gate of a city. In ancient times, the city gate was an important, popular place. A plethora of business transactions, social gatherings, and legal matters occurred at the gate.
What could be considered events at the gate today? In some cultures, the gate may still be the primary place to buy and sell. Markets with kiosks or tents of vendors displaying and selling their goods. The airport concourse has quite a variety of businesses (and you actually have to go through a guarded gate to get to them). Some major cities even have a design district, an arts district, a fashion district, a medical district, and a financial district.
Our Connections Challenge: One connection is our financial contribution to the economy. Especially during our world’s current pandemic, we see the necessity for businesses and their impact on society. Another connection is the variety of gifts and talents of those operating businesses. We notice the unique creativity displayed in preparing goods and services while utilizing skills in communications, finance, and marketing. Many cities may not utilize a literal physical gate to perform business. However, as we shop, we apply the concepts of contributing to the economy and encouraging the gifts and talents of others.