Merry Christmas Starbucks!

The Gospel and the War on the War on Christmas

red cupThe War on the War on Christmas started early this year. It’s not even Thanksgiving yet, but a vocal minority of Christians have already begun to fight.

The so-called War on Christmas began a few years back when nativity scenes started being removed from public spaces and when the greeting “Merry Christmas” began to slip from civil and corporate parlance.

Some Christians began to take offense and someone labeled this cultural phenomenon a War on Christmas.

Let’s just get one thing straight: There is no War on Christmas.

Instead, there are millions of Not Christians who want to celebrate Not Christmas. Is that so hard to understand?

Are non-Christians required to celebrate Christmas in America? No.

Are Christians required to celebrate non-Christmas holidays in America? No?

So, what’s the problem?

To a small, misguided army of Christians armed with Facebook profiles and YouTube accounts the problem is red cups that aren’t wishing us a Merry Christmas.

As I see it, there’s an even bigger problem: The War on the War on Christmas.

Or, to put it another way, the problem is obnoxious people who claim to be Christians but wouldn’t know what it meant to be Christ-like if it slapped them on the face. (Hint: turn the other cheek.)

We are expecting too much if we want red cups to say “Merry Christmas”, public spaces to defend our faith, and darkness to shine like the light.

Instead, it’s supposed to be the other way around. Christians are to be a light in the darkness. We are to take the good news of Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection and present this good news to people who are sinning and stand in in need of a loving and forgiving and compassionate Savior.

Our mission as followers of Jesus is to share and live out this glorious good news. To get sucked into the War on the War on Christmas is to dilute the power of the Gospel with 2/3 hot milk and a thin layer of foam.

To whom did Jesus ever say, “Follow me, and I will make you obnoxious in Starbucks cafes?”

To whom did Jesus ever say, “If you love Me, put nativities in public spaces and shout down anyone who asks for them to be removed.”

With all of that in mind, followers of Jesus are going to have to start the War on the War on the War on Christmas earlier than expected.

For me, the War on the War on the War on Christmas starts with this blog post written on my laptop at Starbucks…as I sip on a caramel brûlée latte…out of a godless red cup…A red cup that reminds me of the cup of God’s wrath that Jesus drank as He shed His own blood on the cross nearly 2,000 years ago…A red cup that reminds me that the red blood of Jesus was shed so that the lost could be found, the broken-hearted could be made whole, and ashes could be turned into something beautiful again.

Brothers and Sisters, we must not let the plain meaning of Jesus’ red blood be hidden by a misguided attack on a plain red cup.

So, to Christians and non-Christians, to liberals and conservatives, to Starbucks customers, employees, and owners, I say “A very merry Christmas to you and your families! I pray that the love of Jesus would be made known to you this holiday season!”

Nathan is the pastor of City Life Church in Ridgewood, NY. He and his family are committed to making and multiplying disciples in the most diverse county in the US. Read more about Nathan here. Visit the City Life Church website here.

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Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • Josh

    Well said, my friend.

    • nathancreitz

      Thanks Josh! God bless!