Wow! Now that’s a troubling, profane trio!
I like shopping at Target. They have spacious aisles, a quiet atmosphere, good product selection, and usually decent prices.
I love Starbucks. The coffee is outstanding, the conversation around the tables is engaging, the staff is usually friendly, and it’s a genuine coffee shop.
I love the holidays. Thanksgiving and Christmas are tops in my book right under Good Friday and Resurrection Sunday. And they are holidays filled with happiness and joy.
Now, I realize that my troubling, profane trio is a concern to thousands. Then I read about Jesus in the following passages:
Matt. 9:10 And it came to pass, as Jesus sat at meat in the house (Matthew’s), behold, many publicans and sinners came and sat down with him and his disciples.
Luke 14:1 One Sabbath, when he went to dine at the house of a ruler of the Pharisees, they were watching him carefully.
Jesus mixed and mingled among sinners, and as you read on in Luke 14, you see it was for the purpose of calling men and women to be His disciples. His last command before ascending into Heaven was, Go and make disciples (Matthew 28:19-20). Indeed, Jesus renounced sin, but He called sinners to repentance (Luke 5:32).
I am greatly disturbed by some of the decisions of Target, Starbucks, and the general pushing of Christ out of Christmas. I must say something and stand against unrighteousness. Nevertheless, there is a divine call that supersedes all of this—Jesus came to seek and to save that which was lost (Luke 19:10). I have that same divine command upon me as do all disciples of Jesus Christ. We have what the people in Target, Starbucks, and the whole world need (John 3:16-17; 2 Corinthians 4:7).
Bottom line. The greatest way to curtail sin, unrighteousness, and unholy living is the gospel. As I say to our congregation so often, you do not go to the grocery story just to buy a gallon of milk. You go with a heart for people, looking for the Lord to connect you with some precious soul that needs Him.
It is so wrong to condemn the world for living what they are, and then not sharing what they can be in Christ.
So, if your conscience does not condemn you, go ahead on over to Starbucks. Get a cup of coffee, and don’t grumble about the price. Then, engage in conversation with someone to build a relationship that will lead to sharing the gospel that day or in the future.
As I have heard and repeated many times, the gospel changes everything.
Oh, and you’ll have a happy holidays, too.
“In other words what frees you to live radically for others in this world is the confidence that this world is not the main world.”