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 Sales soar at 'Christian' stores

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MELBOURNE, Fla. -- For Christians, these are inspirational places, sanctuaries really. And they aren't churches.

They are stores where the shelves are packed with products ranging from Bibles to belt buckles that are made for, and by, Christians.

In addition to the spirituality of it all, Christian products average about $4.5 billion in U.S. sales annually, according to Andy Butcher, editor of Christian Retail Magazine in Palm Coast, Fla., near Daytona Beach.

Nationwide, chains like Wal-Mart, Target and Barnes & Noble are selling Christian products, too, as the market grows.

But it's the inspirational quality of Christian retail stores, not just the merchandise, that draws people.


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SI Moderator - Greg Gordon

 2005/1/2 21:16Profile
rocklife
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Joined: 2004/4/1
Posts: 323
usa

 Re: Sales soar at 'Christian' stores

I really appreciate having christian stores to go shopping. First of all, its not at church, where the focus should be God, not money (though some churches have stores in them, that doesn't seem right to me).

The atmoshphere at the stores is also nice, there is a difference from other stores just by friendliness of staff and service and even with other shoppers.

Just my 2 cents.


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Jina

 2005/1/2 22:23Profile
hredii
Member



Joined: 2004/8/1
Posts: 218
Fresno CA

 Re: Sales soar at 'Christian' stores

Does anyone have suggestions on how to pray about this? I am not trying to be sarcastic, just at a loss of how to attack this in prayer. I do believe praying for Christian stores is a very important issue of prayer.

Let us pray for these products and stores are made in to the image of Christ; And for protection from the spirit of the world and also from false teaching.

Any other suggestions/ideas I would love to hear.

How do you yourself pray about this?


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Adam Fell

 2005/1/3 2:54Profile
KeithLaMothe
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Joined: 2004/3/28
Posts: 354


 Re:

Well, perhaps we should pray that the products are honoring to God and instruments of His blessing, but that they also be in keeping with certain commandments by not being [i]literally[/i] made in the image of Christ ;-)

Among the more important things, as you pointed out, is that the owners and operators of these stores not be trapped into acting like the world. Let us serve, and not do the disservice of watering down our message and/or faith for various reasons; we may think it will reach more people, but even if that is so it will only do that disservice to that many more people.

 2005/1/3 3:13Profile
sermonindex
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Joined: 2002/12/11
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"Pilgrim and Sojourner." - 1 Peter 2:11

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 Re:

Quote:
Nationwide, chains like Wal-Mart, Target and Barnes & Noble are selling Christian products, too, as the market grows.


Intresting brothers you just brought out some great ideas for prayer towards christian stores!! I was kinda sad with the news that so much of Chrisitan products are a mock of secular items and there are many people making money off the Christian niche like a business.. I find its easy to get so mesmorized with all the Christian "things" available...


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SI Moderator - Greg Gordon

 2005/1/3 9:15Profile
crsschk
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 Re:

This might likely get me in trouble but...

Find it a little distressing what is being offered as a whole, the 'best sellers', the garb, the mass merchandising...Is it now fashionable to be a Christian? IF the stores were to run videos of the persecuted church on the overhead monitors or play say...oh, how about "Ten Shekels and a Shirt" over the sound system, or Leonard Ravenhill's "Judgment Seat of Christ", how long do you think they might stay in business?

What if all the 'bargain' books were put up front as 'best sellers' and all the "How to have a prosperous and successful life in seven easy steps" book's were removed?

Cynical? Perhaps, I just recall that the rather large retail bookstore near here used to be much smaller and also a time when I dared to go in there and felt so convicted that I could hardly lift my eyes to the clerk.

Can't but help being reminded of this recent posting from our dear friend Ed, (Gideons)
[url=http://www.sermonindex.net/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?topic_id=3343&forum=35#27594] ORAL ROBERTS VISION[/url] Scroll down to the heading [b]Financing the End Time Harvest[/b]

In doing a comparison between what that pastor has to say and what gets passed off as 'Christianity' largely anymore, especially here, you would think it fair to label us as a cult. A cult of entertainment junkies.


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Mike Balog

 2005/1/3 9:17Profile
crsschk
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Joined: 2003/6/11
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Santa Clara, CA

 Re:

My, see I have gone off on a little tangent here.
Yet wonder if this statement from the original is really true;

Quote:
But it's the inspirational quality of Christian retail stores, not just the merchandise, that draws people.


Is it?

Would be curious to hear others thoughts on this.
What is your sense upon walking into our modern day Christian retail stores? What grabs your attention?

Not looking for agreement. Just curious, maybe I am just cynical.


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Mike Balog

 2005/1/3 9:37Profile
Gideons
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Joined: 2003/9/16
Posts: 474
Virginia

 Re:

Brother Mike,

My trips to Christian bookstores are becoming infrequent. I see so little emphasis on repentance and holiness and so little on actually walking with Jesus.

Most of the Christian books seem to focus inordinately on the "self" life. What's in it for me? How can I get what I want and have Jesus too?

How many honest books can you find on being a disciple (i.e. a discliplined one)?

I read a book a few months ago that was referenced by Ravenhill in one of his books. It was entitled "The Golden Calf." Unfortunately, much of what I see focuses on the worship of Baal rather than surrender to Christ.

Maybe the bookstores are better than they are around here I'm not certain but I don't frequent them much any more. I pray my tone isn't harsh. I'm not trying to be harsh, but am trying to be honest here.


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Ed Pugh

 2005/1/3 11:53Profile









 "Day after day"

"For day after day they seek me out;
they [i]seem[/i] eager to know my ways,

as if they were a nation that does
what is right
and has not forsaken the
commands of its God.

They ask me for just decisions
and [i]seem[/i] eager for God to come
near them.

'Why have we fasted', they say,
'and you have not seen it?

'Why have we humbled ourselves,
and you have not noticed?'

Yet on the day of your fasting,
you do as you please
and exploit all your workers.

Your fasting ends in quarreling and
strife.
and in striking each other with
wicked fists.

You cannot fast as you do today
and expect your voice to be heard
on high".

Isaiah 58: 2-4

 2005/1/3 14:31
KeithLaMothe
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Joined: 2004/3/28
Posts: 354


 Re: "Day after day"

My initial thoughts upon seeing the topic were something along the lines of "More compromise?"

Just a general tendency of mine to associate "popular" (if such it is) Christianity with compromised Christianity. Not necessarily true, but not far off the mark in many cases.

I think trade is fine (so long as people are eager to sacrifice for those in need that can't really give anything in return), and on one hand I'm glad that ostensibly Christian products are gaining space in the marketplace and thus the culture. My concern is about whether these products are indeed honoring to God and truthfully representing Him. A great many true books and such are undoubtedly available, but the industry as a whole may be guilty of lying by ommission if it is not presenting the entire truth (if they leave out Justice, Sin, Repentence, etc).

I have to admit, I'm cynical on this. May the Lord have mercy on us and give us the grace to realize we don't have to be His PR staff.

 2005/1/3 16:24Profile





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