OPINION: A Christian response to the Starbucks Red Cups

 Graphic by Sammy Dewey

Graphic by Sammy Dewey

Megan Conley, Assistant Editor

If our faith is one that can be bogged down by a paper drink container, then we’ve got a lot more to worry about than Starbucks. Our faith is one that has endured persecution, war and trials. Our faith is not one that is upset by trifles.

“If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.” -John 15:9

When we as Christians allow the world to dictate what angers us and what frightens us then we have lost control of our faith.

Colossians 2:8 tells us: “See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ.”

Why should we be surprised when a secular company doesn’t blatantly support Jesus? It is no secret that Starbucks is not a Christian organization, so it should be no surprise that they don’t have the word “Christ” or “Christmas” on their cups. Even in past years, the cups have been adorned with designs such as ornaments and snowflakes, which don't represent Jesus' birth or the true meaning of Christmas. 

In Acts, we see Paul get consistently mocked, ridiculed and even stoned for speaking the name of Jesus.

If Paul didn’t let stones and death plots stop his sharing the Gospel, then why should we allow a cup to stop ours? It’s no secret that the world we live in now is one consumed by sin. If we are constantly seeking to live as Christ, the world will automatically oppose us. Paul tells us in 2 Timothy that all Christians will endure persecution.

One of the primary themes of Christianity is the focus on people rather than materialistic goods. Did Jesus command us in Acts 1:8 to become upset when we encounter non-Christian situations? No. Instead, we’re commanded to preach the name of Christ in our Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria.

And in our Starbucks. And in line at Walmart. And when we’re stuck in traffic. We should always be living a life pleasing to God, even when it seems difficult.

So instead, my fellow believers, focus on the people you encounter. Think about Christ while you’re waiting in line and I assure you, no cup or plate or fork will upset you.

And what if you’re the only person that might share the Gospel with that barista? Would you be willing to risk their eternal life just to prove a point to a company?

Instead of trying to get back at Starbucks by tricking them into putting Merry Christmas on your cup, why not share the love of Christ with the barista by asking if you can pray for them in any way or simply sharing a smile and friendly conversation. This is a much better example of what the Christian life is truly about and a much better proclamation of Jesus.