Has anyone else noticed that since the November election, many Christians seem to feel a little more “empowered” about expressing their faith? I sometimes call it “In Your Face Faith”. I’m not real sure how I feel about it. I’m certainly not a shrinking violet when it comes to be boldly and proudly a follower of Christ, but at the same time, there’s a sometimes-not-so-fine line between being an ambassador and being obnoxious.
I was getting a haircut this morning when my barber (who knows I’m a believer) told me of an exchange he’d had with a customer yesterday. He said that as he finished the haircut, he’d wished his client a “Happy Holidays”. The client rebuked him for being “politically correct” and told him that he should wish people a “Merry Christmas.” Apparently, my hapless barber had to endure quite the diatribe about leaving Christ out of Christmas, the fear in our culture of being perceived as “religious”, etc…
I just saw a report on the Foxnews website about an Alabama judge (no, it isn’t Roy Moore) who has had the 10 Commandments embroidered on the front of his judicial robes. Apparently some defense lawyers are not happy about it and are going to use it for grounds for appeal. The judge is sticking by his guns, Roy Moore is supporting him and this is sure to become yet another Alabama test of wills in the future. A symbolic gesture that makes a statement, but I wonder how effective it will be in persuading anyone.
One of my least favorite aspects of this season is the constant news reports about the ACLU and Americans United for Separation of Church and State suing and intimidating officials into neutering Christmas into a cultural event while ignoring its Spiritual foundation. One stupid Kansas official even issued a public apology for referring to their “Holiday Tree” as a “Christmas Tree”. HORRORS!!!!
Some have suggested that we show disrespect to Christ by making His birthday celebration a more inocuous celebration of the season as opposed to a religious holiday, but I would counter that we’ve already pretty much massacred the spiritual significance of the holiday decades ago with our grotesque practice of commercializing the entire observance. From the obscene amounts of money we spend buying gifts people don’t really need and giving them to people we really don’t want to give them to, to the annual office “Christmas parties” filled with booze and debauchery, to the messed up messages of Christ’s ministry, to the churches that make big bucks charging the public to come see camels march down their aisles at the annual Christmas pageant, we’ve really pretty well exhausted any argument that says we aren’t showing disrespect for the Christmas story by now.
I’m not sure how I feel about this sudden resurgence of “aggressive Christian identity” (not to be confused with legitimately being salt and light). Maybe you have some thoughts and will post them. Either way, it’s something worth pondering.
Here’s the link to an article that shows another example of the conflict over Christmas. http://aolsvc.news.aol.com/news/article.adp?id=20041215175009990018