Monday, March 25, 2013

Time for a Coffee Break?

In recent news, the Starbucks Coffee Company has become a very vocal and active supporter of same-sex marriage. In a report from CNS News from a year ago - "Starbucks, the world’s largest coffee shop chain, added its name to the list of major corporations that have endorsed a gay marriage bill in Washington State, saying the legislation shares the company’s values at its core...Kalen Holmes, executive vice president for Partner Resources, offered this statement -  'Starbucks Supports Marriage Equality,' and continued, 'Starbucks is proud to join other leading Northwest employers in support of Washington State legislation recognizing marriage equality for same-sex couples.' In summary, Holmes concluded that their desire to support same-sex marriage, 'Is core to who we are and what we value as a company.'"

This week, there was a great deal of buzz concerning what Howard Schultz, CEO of Starbucks, may or may not have said at a shareholder's meeting. Regardless of the reports, Starbucks is an advocate for same-sex marriage, and concerning this fact there is no debate.

This brings up an important dicussion. Can Christians support businesses who openly stand against what the Bible says? It is obvious that we cannot go out of the world. If you even go to Walmart, you are going to a business that now sells alcohol and cigarettes, and has thousands of products on the shelves made by companies with immoral agendas. It is nearly impossible to buy any product these days without some of your financial support going to a company promoting something that you do not believe. Every time you pay taxes on any level, legislators are using that money to formulate bills that are immoral and ungodly. So what can a Christian do?

The most frustrating part of the issue is the attitude of the people who have allowed Satan to deceive their minds and hearts. Christians are being strong-armed into tolerating sin, and if they don't tolerate it, then they are labeled as unloving, uneducated, or unintelligent. The media and our society in general looks at those who do not support things such as same-sex marriage as if we are out of our minds and not even worth their time. I am so thankful that the Bible calls us not to be pleasers of men, but pleasers of God.

I think there is an answer to this cultural conundrum. When I know that a company like Starbucks, or Home Depot, or J.C. Penney, or anyone else is an active voice to promote something that is an abomination in the eyes of God, I can make the individual choice not to support them. I cannot bind this on others, but as an issue of my own conscience I can be active in showing my allegiance to God and His holy word.

Dear friends, there is not a person or entity on this planet that can rule in my heart when my heart is already occupied by Jesus Christ. That being the case, I am not going to conform to this world, but I will be transformed by the renewing of my mind. When it comes to Starbucks, I have made the choice to take a coffee break. I cannot and will not support them. This is not out of hate, but out of for God, love for the Bible, and love for a lost a dying world.

"And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God." - Romans 12:2

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