Monday, November 9, 2015

Red Cups. Do Not = Persecution



the act of persecuting.
the state of being persecuted.
a program or campaign to exterminate, drive away, or subjugate people based on their membership in a religious, ethnic, social, or racial group:
the persecutions of Christians by the Romans.

News Flash.

In the US, Christians are not being persecuted by the red cups of Starbucks. 

However, when people are rude and inconsiderate to Starbucks employees over this "issue", you are persecuting them for being members of that store and it's sales team. They have nothing to do with the choice of cup for this holiday season, nor do they have any sway with the corporate leaders who make these design choices. When you insist that they say "Merry Christmas" or heaven forbid you actually do the asinine, kitschy thing and tell them your name is Merry Christmas; you are being completely un-Christ like. Because "If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging is not rude it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered. But, dear heavens. Stop the press. This scintillating  and witty repartee will slay them in their tracks and they will instantly realize they've been missing "the reason for the season."

 No. They will simply see a rude, inconsiderate person who is attempting to force them to say Merry Christmas. Rather like when your friends tell you a joke in which you string together different words that are totally unrelated to each other, which get you to say something like "I spank myself" or something as juvenile. But oh be still my heart. A blow was struck for truth and rightness in the world of today's coffee drinkers.

Why do they have to start saying a holiday greeting to you prior to that holiday actually happening anyway? Oh and if they don't want to say it, that is OK too. They may not be a Christian and have no desire to say that particular set of words. Or they may be a Christian and still not want to say it. Or they may work for a company who's policy is "we say Happy Holidays." This is also appropriate because here in American we think business owners can make choices for their companies. And we should say with Paul "obey your earthly masters with respect and fear, and with sincerity of heart, just as you would obey Christ." Because this whole Happy Holidays verses Merry Christmas isn't a sin issue nor are they asking you to deny Christ, just say what they ask you to say. Or say nothing. Whatever.

But this brings us to a central point. What is it that people think is missing from these cups? What do you actually want on them, to indicate Christmas? In the past, have Starbucks cups featured a manger on them? Or a star leading men riding on camels? Or at the very least a SHEEP? Because, if not, what the heck are you whinging about? Do snowflakes and Christmas trees indicate deeply evocative Christian truths? Could not the thought be turned around and it be said "Look, a purely red cup, this reminds me the meaning for the season is the birth of the Savior. That His blood will be shed for the cleansing of the world!"

Why do we think we can demand that a secular company put "Christian" symbols on a product they are producing. We have no such right. Where in the Bible do you find this?

I posit that we all, to readily, loose sight of the Father and Christ in our mad rush through this festive season; and Starbucks evil red cups carry very little weight in why this happens. We do not tune our hearts to sing His praise through our actions and choices. We allow such petty and shallow roilings to snatch away our peace and cheerful kindness to others. And it is also an excuse. It is so much easier to cry foul at this company, rather then putting effort into loving. Here is a thought, how about you give up buying all coffees? Not as a boycott, but so you can put money into a jar and support ...oh say a Compassion Child. For what most people spend on coffee in a month you can change a child's life, save them from starvation, or being trafficked and give them an education. Or you can continue to post garbage about the dastardly red cups of Starbucks.

Because Jesus cares about a cup over loving your neighbor. 

This is what the birth of Christ signifies, salvation for the world. Decorations or lack thereof on a disposable paper cup do not change or enhance this truth.

"The angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God. You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever and his kingdom will never end."

"So Joseph also went up form the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledge to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn."

"You have been a refuge for the poor, a refuge for the needy in his distress, a shelter from the storm and a shade from the heat. On this mountain the Lord Almighty will prepare a feast of rich food for all peoples, a banquet of aged wine----the best of meats and finest of wines. On this mountain he will destroy the shroud that enfolds all peoples, the sheet that covers all nations, he will swallow up death forever. The sovereign Lord will wipe away the tears from all faces; he will remove the disgrace of his people from all the earth. In that day they will say, Surely this is our God; we trusted in him, and he saved us. This is the Lord, we trusted in him let us rejoice and be glad in his salvation. "