Sometimes I hear people say things that trouble my spirit. Seldom can I immediately pinpoint the cause. It is like having a vague itch that you want to scratch, but every time you think you’ve nailed it, the itch has moved about three-quarters of an inch away from its original place of irritation. Eventually, though, it clarifies itself.
Shortly after Thanksgiving, two of the clergy of our church carried the Christmas Wars into a local branch of a national bank. (Please know in advance that both of them love Jesus, and care deeply about reaching unbelievers with the Gospel.) I One of them had walked into the bank to take care of some financial matters. At the end of the transaction the teller cheerfully, but unfortunately, wished the clergyman “Happy Holidays.” Unfortunately, because it triggered the clergyman to open fire in yet another battle of the Christmas Wars by challenging the teller’s mode of holiday address.
The employees of this particular bank had been instructed to avoid offending people who might be offended by a “Merry Christmas.” The clergyman allowed that he had been offended by the “Happy Holidays” greeting. He, and another clergy person from the church, encouraged by the cheers of a good number of church members, took on the national office, and mentioned that they were offended, even to the point of considering taking their business elsewhere.
In the end, the ministers won the skirmish. The question, though, is how did it affect the spread of the Gospel? I can’t help thinking that Jesus might have had a more productive plan.
Here’s a link to someone who is like-minded. Christian Protection Racket