An Open Letter to Christmas Scrooge
[Note: So there is no confusion, this was written in December, 2011. At the time, we were attending Radford Fellowship, a church plant of Paul Washer and HeartCry missionary society. The attitude described below was not characteristic of simply one man…..]
Last Sunday I was at church and remarked how much I admired a young man’s hat. I went so far as to declare “Man, I really like that hat. Maybe I’ll get something like that for Christmas!” It was a compliment, not covetousness.
The response from someone nearby surprised me.
With a straight face, not even a hint of a smile, the reply was “Well….maybe you can ask the tooth fairy, or Santa.” And with a completely disrespectful, condescending glare from a young man half-my age, he whisked his child away from my, apparently, heretical speech. No smile, no hint of good-humored fellowship, much less of friendship in Christ.
Shockingly, I held my tongue.
The young man who wore the hat simply smiled uncomfortably, as if he wasn’t sure what to say.
Well I do.
Attitudes like that have no place in the Church of Jesus Christ.
Parents, regardless of how you view Christmas, there is always room for fellowship with those who differ from your views. If there is not, I am certain there is pietistic pride in your heart that needs to be mortified.
This is not a post, per se, about Christmas, but about arrogance in spirituality. Quite frankly, I’m currently in the heart of it.
Listen, I didn’t fall off the turnip truck yesterday, and in my 50 years of experience with Church and people in it, I’ve learned this much:
When you disrespect your elders in front of your own child – elders, not in the Presbyterian sense – but those who are older than you – you do your child a great disservice and set a poor, pathetic example of Christian charity and fellowship.
You are teaching your child:
- It’s ok to condescend those older than you.
- It’s ok to disrespect a Christian man and not address him as ‘Mr.’
- It’s ok to despise the person and their views on Christmas
- It’s ok, even if that man is a pastor-teacher, to walk away holier-than-thou and to disdain a man who, maybe, perhaps, possibly may be one who possesses wisdom you don’t want.
When that kind of attitude is taken, and your child is being pushed along by your loving , protective hands away from someone who may, maybe, be a help to you spiritually, it might be the case that you need to stop worshipping your current spiritual hero, and just lighten up and go back to viewing the Word of God as your authority.