There’s room for worship on your shopping run

Nothing says #momlife—or, more specifically, white middle-class suburban mom life—than a run to the store with your kid on a Thursday morning.

Last Thursday was a very normal Thursday with a very normal shopping run. I wasn’t expecting anything except the norm.

But God showed up in that place. Yes, in my local discount store.

To be clear, I do realize that God is always there. But it seldom feels that way. Intellectually, I know that God is in the mundane and that worship happens even in the mundane, but something in me still craves the more flashy moments of faith.

I mean, yes, I know I can worship God while running errands, but it’s way cooler and more fun when I’m in the inner city on a Friday night talking about Jesus to trafficked women. Shouldn’t my life consist of much more of that and much less of these seemingly less holy trips to the store? (Or, even better, shouldn’t I move to Africa to do mission work and give up shopping altogether?) 

I’m sure you’ve felt this way sometimes too. 

Anyway, back to my story on that very normal Thursday.

I was done shopping and was searching for the shortest checkout line when I spotted him.

Chris.

The man I had run into at church just a few weeks earlier.

We’d both been walking into church when I recognized him and said, “Hey! I know where you work!” He was visiting our church with friends, and we chatted a bit. 

And then I forgot about Chris—until I saw him in that moment. 

(I of course went to his checkout line.)

“Chris! Do you remember me?” I said. “From church?” 

“Yeah, I remember you!” he said, and we both kind of laughed.

And that’s when worship went down—in that checkout line, as a man scanned my eye drops and organic balsamic vinegar and dollar-section notecards. 

I don’t even really know what happened, and thankfully, there was no one in line behind us because we started talking about God for the next several minutes. It was INCREDIBLE. Chris is clearly a believer, and he was praising God—loudly. In fact, we were both kind of loud, and in retrospect I’m sure people around us heard us, although that wasn’t our goal.

We talked about God’s goodness and about heaven and about sin and about how we wish everyone had the peace that we have thanks to Jesus’ death. We talked about the brokenness of this world and of our own lives, coupled with the hope that we have in heaven. “I have rheumatoid arthritis, but I won’t have pain in heaven!” I said. “Yeah, and I’ll have a perfect body!” Chris said. (Chris is missing most of his right arm.)

It was joyful and Spirit-filled and—dare I say—worshipful. Yes, I think we worshiped God right there in that checkout line.

And that’s when I realized that God gives me opportunities all over the place, all the time, to worship. I just need to go where the Spirit leads, get out of my own way, and let him transform the mundane. 

So, because I love bulleted lists of practical tips, how do we open ourselves up to these opportunities to praise God or to ignite meaningful conversations?

  • We unclench our fists when it comes to controlling our schedules and prioritize opportunities to praise God above completing our to-do lists.
  • We stay off of our phones more often to be present with the people and moments around us—in our homes and outside of them.
  • We ask a question back when someone—a neighbor, a barista, a cashier—asks us a question.
  • We intentionally frequent the same places so we slowly build relationships with the staff and “regulars” at our local grocery store, coffee shop, and discount store. 
  • We pray and ask for God to give us glimpses of heaven in the mundane earthly things. We stop doubting whether God’s present in things like shopping runs and ask him to open our eyes to see how he is indeed there in the midst of it all. 

I promise you, friend, there is room for worship even on your shopping run.

Diana Kerr is a certified professional life coach for go-getter Christian women and a mom trying to live radically and worshipfully in the midst of the mundane. Click here for FREE tips and encouragement delivered right to your inbox if you’re the kind of woman who wants to live intentionally in the midst of busy, necessary life stuff.