More shopping during the Olympics on Sunday our Day of Rest

I don't know how I missed this, but in May our MP voted to relax the Sunday trading laws to allow shops to open longer during the Olympics. I am concerned about this for several reasons, the first is personal, my wife Gail works in a shopping mall and she will have to work later or start earlier on the Sunday's during the Olympics. She has no choice if she wants to keep her company happy and keep her job.

Secondly, I don't understand the ever increasing need to shop. The erosion of family time, to be replaced with purchasing time seems wrong to me. Happiness doesn't come from stuff. Don't get me wrong here, I like stuff, and I have more than my fair share of it, but the stuff doesn't make me happier than I was when I was without it. In fact for the last few months I haven't been working so money is getting tight, I am happier now buying less but with more time to spend with my family and friends.

I do shop on a Sunday, it's easy and convenient. But it's not so easy for those having to work Sundays, they get no extra money and if they don't agree to work Sundays they don't get the job. The opt in and opt out clauses in the original bill don't seem to be working. Companies just expect their staff to put in the hours.

But are companies really making extra money? I question if a small shop in a large shopping mall will make any extra money and they will have to pay extra for staff and managers to be in. Money is tight at the moment for everyone, if people have longer to spend the same amount of money then surely businesses will suffer.

It also seems a shame to me that after all the effort made to bring and host the Olympics in the UK, that extra effort is being made to drag people away from the sporting hero’s and special of the event.

My personal view is that Sunday is a Holy day, a day set apart, scared, a time to be spent with God. My first understanding of this concept was the awe with which I watch Eric Liddell, in Chariots of Fire, refuse to run on a Sunday. What could make a man give up a dream like an Olympic Gold Medal, the answer is Love, Love of God, and more importantly a realisation of Gods love of us. I think I need to watch that film again in preparation for the Olympics, and in preparation for my personal attempt to shop less and God willing, not at all on a Sunday.

I'll conclude this post with a quote I found in the BCC news item about change to Sunday Trading laws.
“Sunday is a divine and priceless institution... the necessary pause in the national life and activity; it is the birthright of every British subject... and above all our great heritage, and one which is our responsibility, privilege and duty to hand on to posterity”
Winston Churchill

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