An upscale shopping mall in Charlotte decided this year there would be no Christmas tree as part of the display where children visit Santa Claus with this wish list. Instead the mall would substitute a glacier ice cave to enhance the child’s experience with Santa. Seriously … did mall management believe a child would prefer an image of an ice cave in the Santa photo rather than a Christmas tree?
Shoppers immediately mobilized and set up a petition on Change.org to bring back the Christmas tree. At the last count, 25,000 people signed the petition. Mall management changed their minds and brought back the tree. Signees said they would go to another mall for the child’s Santa visit where there would be a Christmas tree. The people have spoken. In fact, the mall owners own multiple facilities across the USA. Similar petitions reportedly garnered 75,000 + signatures.
So what’s the take-away from this Christmas tree dust-up?
I liked Candace Cameron Bure’s recent comments about a comparable dust-up with Starbucks removing “holiday” symbols from its coffee cups. She said holiday symbols on a cup do not define Christmas for her as a Christian … her relationship with Jesus does.
So here’s the bottom line. There is power in petition and numbers. Christians should flex their muscle and not be so timid or politically correct. A recent survey indicated the nones __ those who do not profess any religious identification or inclination are growing more secular. At the same time, the survey indicated believers are becoming more strongly committed, seeking more prayer, bible study and home groups.
Getting the Christmas tree back to the mall can easily become a hollow victory if we forget it’s all about our relationship with Jesus. Some battles are life and death. Some are nice and traditional like a Christmas tree. Some are not worth the effort.
So what’s your take? Where do you fall in this battle?