Thursday, November 1, 2007

The AFA vs. Mrs Fields revisited

I recently received the following response to my blog on the AFA and the Mrs Fields company.

There isn't bullying going on, Mrs. Fields expressed their opinion by saying no to the simple words Christmas, we're just expressing our opinion. They don't want to offend A hand full of athiests? But are willing to offend God and those who believe. Yep, I am a bit offended, and Christmas isn't for Athiests, this was our holiday, and nobody forced them into joining, now they have pushed their way in, and are changing the rules. You put Christians and pansies in the same boat and you are wrong.

As the comment was anonymous I can't respond to just that person which would be my preference so I'll throw it up here and maybe generate some more discussion.

First I regret using the the word bullying as it appears the word has distracted this reader from the questions that followed. However I don't feel the word is entirely inappropriate. The AFA has asked thousands of people to stop buying this companies products unless they put the word Christmas on their packing and in their promotions. They didn't just ask them to express their disappointment in a letter, they ask them to put fiscal pressure on the company to do something. That's more than expressing an opinion.
Webster's Defines Bullying as forcing one's way aggressively or by intimidation.
I consider several thousand letters threating to ban your product aggressive.
This week the AFA sent me a letter telling how the pressure has paid off and that the Mrs Fields company has added Christmas items to their website.

But I come back to the questions I posed in the original post. How does this campaign draw people (the real people who work at Mrs. Fields) closer to God? Does it show them His love? If the word Christmas appears on a package will someone see it and decide to give their lives to follow Christ?

My hope is simply that we will live following Christ's example. Remember how He treated the woman divorced several times over and living in adultery, the prostitute and the thieving tax collector. It was to these people that He brought grace, love and understanding. Now remember who he reserved His greatest anger and harshest words for. It was for those who knew and feared God but didn't live according to His spirit.

I have four children and it sometimes scares me what they see, hear and are exposed to by our rapidly changing culture. It's uncomfortable living in a post-christian nation. However, if I let my fear drive my actions I will lash out at a culture I can't control. But if I let the Spirit drive me, I see people God loves and Christ Died to redeem–instead of seeing their actions, attitudes or behaviors I see people separated from our loving God and facing an eternity without Him.

So again I ask, how does this campaign and others like it draw people into a redemptive relationship with Christ?

If you find this all a bit challenging to your standard way of thinking (as I did when God first started reshaping my thinking on this), I encourage you to read this series of articles by Denis Haack.

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Courtney said...

way to go.

Anonymous said...

Way to go? Who are you people, a pacifist preacher, who will idly sit by, and let the agnostics and athiests team up and strip Christianity from everything, including Christmas, and say I forgive you. They're offending Christ, but apparently not you. Athiests are more loyal to their cause, and will do what they need to do, to get their agenda complete. Stand together like they do, represent and stand for something. They'll just keep tearing and ripping at it til it's gone and there you will be, Oh, it's OK. And Courtney, who are you? Astrological signs? Zodiac years? Preacher! You got some serious explaining to do about what the Bible says about that! Take some time and catch this girl up.

Becky said...

It's a pretty big leap to say that because someone uses a word other than Christmas they are an athiest or agnostic, and especially to put that judgement on all the people in an entire company!
As for zodiac signs, etc, they are added by, not by the subscriber.
Jesus called us to love God and love others; these are the greatest commandments. How are you showing that love?

Brent Colaw said...

Reaux, I am striving to follw Christ's example. Remember what he said of those who spit on Him, mocked Him and hung Him to die an excrutciating death, "Father, forgive them" Remember that God is a bigger and stonger than all the athiests and agnostics. He doesn't need us to fight for Him. Don't let your fear of what others might do to a celebration which we hold dear (that of Christs birth) drive you to hate others. And while he doesn't need us to fight for Him He has commanded us to love our neighbors as we love ourselves. Christ could have come as a great ruler in power and might, He could have established an earthly rule but he didn't. He came as a poor homeless infant, He could have and still could, force people to serve Him but instead He lovingly invites us into a relationship. He left His followers here to spread the Good news that God loves mankind and has made a way for us to have a relationship with Him. We call ourselves Christians but do we immulate Christ when we hate our neighbor?

Anonymous said...


Funny thing -- Jesus was perceived as a "pacifist" preacher by many in his day for his refusal to confront the Romans. He let them team up and strip him of his clothing, his dignity and a bunch of other things. And, as they were nailing him to a cross, he asked his Father to forgive them. Only it was the "religious" people, not the atheists, who did this to him.

Courtney said...

very well put David. and as for my previous comment "way to go" I was just proud of Brent as a person, as a friend...for being different, for having an opinion, for loving, when our world desperately needs more love and not more hate letters.

Anonymous said...

You all make may case more than hurt it. For beginners, I am no hater. And yes,it is athiests and agnostics are so called OFFENDED at the word Christmas, who else would it be? Becky, I never said it was the company that was ath's or ag's, they are appeasing them, assuming that the Christians will sit by and not say anything as you do. Guess what they were wrong and we have Christmas back on not all but some of the products, that's all we ask. (check the Mrs. Fields catalog) And nobody got hurt, ain't that cool? You're right, God doesn't need us to fight for him, WE need to fight for him. And David you're right, it was the religious who crucified Him, do you think that would have happened had the people stepped up in numbers and protected him? Is it the religious again, who are not protecting Christ. God says "you are for me or against me", at least I have chosen a side. Staying neutral in the battle says it all. When some one or group says remove Christ from anything, I'll be front and center saying "no". And someday, Christ will be removed from everything, even vocabularies, how will you show them the way. Until then, my last breath will be to fight for him, his name, and His Birthday will be recognized as Christmas.

Brent Colaw said...

Reaux I'd like to address several points within your comments but I don't feel like blog comments is a very good venue for these discussions. Unfortunately it lends itself to quipling and name calling not God honoring-unity building discussions. If you would like to continue this discussion please email me at
I will once again ask the original questions, I am truly interested in your response to them, please reply.
What is the Goal of this campaign?
How will these letters be received by the real humans at Mrs Field's who read them? Will it draw them to our incredibly loving God or will it move them away? Will it help them understand who He is? If the word Christmas appears on a package will someone see it and decide to give their lives to follow Christ?