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This is a Bad Idea

December 12, 2010

First Baptist Dallas has launched a website called, Grinch Alert.  According to their website, the purpose is:

Have you encountered a “Grinch” this Christmas season? Share your experiences here at GrinchAlert.com! Here, you can nominate businesses and organizations that shut-out expressions of Christmas in their interactions with the public via marketing, advertising and public relations. When companies use misplaced political correctness to halt the celebration of Christmas, they belong on the “Naughty List.”

We also want to know which companies are celebrating Christmas with excitement and meaning–especially those who keep Christ in Christmas where He belongs! Those companies and organizations will be placed on our “Nice List.” Help us preserve Christ this Christmas.

This might be one of the most ridiculous things I have seen in quite a while.  It gets even better if you read some of the comments people have posted (and there are hundreds).  Just a few I read:

One person put Delta Airlines on the “naughty” list:

Though I am a frequent flyer with Delta they did not mind offending me, a Christian, with an email stating “Happy Holidays From The Delta Family”.

Another person put Cracker Barrel on the “nice” list with the following:

The Cracker Barrel plays Christmas music, sells lots of Christmas goodies, serves special Christmas dishes, and decorates their business outside.

And finally, a person put Costco on the “nice” list:

Staff at the doors make sure to say Merry Christmas!

There is so much I could say about this.  I wholeheartedly believe that God would not condone something like this.  Why would he?  It goes against everything that he stands for, everything that he is.  He is love, compassion, grace.  He is about unity and harmony.  The website seeks to divide, disconnect, and heighten differences.  There is no love in that.  And we know that “…God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him” 1 John 4:16 (ESV).  1 Corinthians 13:4-7 states that:

Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

I do not think that a person can say this is truth and then participate in a website which does the exact opposite.  When asked about what the greatest commandant was, Jesus said, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 22:37-39).  Do you think that a website pointing out who is “naughty” and who is “nice” is loving God or loving others?  I think not.

Why are many Christians so quick to divide everything into that which is “sacred or secular”?  And when they do, why do they only do it for the outward actions of others.  They don’t look at the heart.  It is the heart that determines whether or not an action, word, or thought is sacred or secular.  A.W. Tozer, in The Pursuit of God, states it best,

It is not what a man does that determines whether his work is sacred or secular, it is why he does it. The motive is everything. Let a man sanctify the Lord God in his heart and he can thereafter do no common act. All he does is good and acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. For such a man, living itself will be sacramental and the whole world a sanctuary. His entire life will be a priestly ministration.

I’m sorry, but how is saying “Merry Christmas” instead of “Happy Holidays” better and more “Christian”?  How is saying one versus the other more sacred than secular?  It isn’t.  If I say “Merry Christmas” does it automatically mean that I am saying I am thankful that Jesus Christ was born?  No.  Does it mean that I am a Christian? No.  If I am not a Christian and I say it, it means exactly the same thing as “Happy Holidays”.  So why does it matter if I say either one?  It doesn’t.

And, why are we so upset that people and companies are not “celebrating the reason for the season”?  Let’s be honest, those people and companies don’t celebrate Christ any other time of the year so why should we expect them to do it during Christmas? If a person does not believe in Christ they obviously don’t have the same values, beliefs, and worldview that a Christian has, so why would I expect them to act like a Christian?  Yet, many Christians want everyone to act and think the same as them, even when the people don’t believe in the same things.  That is crazy.

Finally, these same Christians who make a big deal about everyone needing to celebrate Jesus during Christmas are also usually the ones that only celebrate the life of Jesus during Christmas.  The rest of the year they live their lives like Jesus didn’t come and die for their sins and like God doesn’t exist.  But we are called to live our entire lives for God and to do everything for his glory.  EVERYTHING. “So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God” 1 Corinthians 10:31 (ESV).

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Shanda permalink
    December 12, 2010 11:25 pm

    Way to bring in Tozer. 🙂

    I think it’s ironic that they are putting companies on the nice list for choosing to make money off of selling Christmas…

    Not that it’s entirely bad to make money… but there’s a whole lot of missing the point going on, as you’ve stated so well!

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