Target: Misguided Anger in Christianity
Retail giant Target announced recently, “We welcome transgender team members and guests to use the restroom or fitting room facility that corresponds with their gender identity,” the company said in a statement. “Everyone deserves to feel like they belong.”
Eruptions of rage, fear and retaliation ensued -- largely from the Christian sect (the Body of Christ, or the Body, believers). The Body appeared in a stupor that a secular retailer would publicly embrace the current transition of society. Shocker. And then stand back in wonderment and confusion, "Why doesn't the world understand," stomps foot, "It's not faaaaiiiir." And the world stares, drop jawed, thinking, "Raging lunatics." I know this because of posts I read from my non-Christian friends and acquaintances, and my heart absolutely sinks.
The Body is “hurt” because a world system does not value their standards when they, the Body, do not, as a whole, value the standards set before them by God, "Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable – if there is any moral excellence and if there is any praise – dwell on these things." Philippians 4:8 Holman Christian Study Bible
The Body of Christ devours and gulps down every libation and cocktail served by Hollywood and the media – scoffing at those who try to lovingly warn them of the dangers, “All things are lawful, but not all things are profitable. All things are lawful, but not all things edify.” In other words, sure, there is freedom – but does that make it the best choice? And rather than seek what will help all to see God's goodness, acceptance and redemption in the long run, the vast majority seeks pleasure and entertainment, becoming “lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God.”
Target, or other secular corporations heralding gender neutrality, is not the rightful target of anger – complacency, apathy, ignorance ought be. Ignorance does not equate innocence. The Body is not innocent. Calloused hearts towards the wholeness of others by living lives to please ourselves rather than walk in the power availed to us through the Cross and Holy Spirit. Being comfortable at blaming the lack of power in our lives as “God’s will,” rather than self-inventory of allowing things that are not profitable in our lives. Not that God is punishing us, no, we, through decisions, limit Him. “All things are lawful, but not all things are profitable.” The Body is fine as long as the compromise doesn’t threaten their safety, while living a life that screams, “to hell with the rest of the world, because I know I am saved and that’s good enough for me. I’m not worried about how I live because Jesus paid it all. I’m safe, my children are safe.” But when the erosion of identity and the blurring of lines affects them and their children, suddenly the anger roars.
Yes, there should be anger -but not at Target - anger for complacency, apathy, laziness, calloused hearts. Anger for not praying vigilantly, anger for not studying to show yourself approved unto God a workman that needs not be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of Truth. Anger for not loving LGBT communities as they are and allowing God to bring any needed change, when THEY choose to accept Christ and God's standards.
My children have friends from every demographic and sexuality. You know what, I am compelled to love the gay and transgender - who have sat at my table and eaten with us, laughed with us - right where they are. Jesus did. Jesus was scoffed at by religious leaders for eating with the "sinners"...
God sent Jesus NOT to Condemn!
For God did not send His Son into the world that He might condemn the world, but that the world, but that the world might be saved through Him.
Anyone who believes in Him is not condemned, but anyone who does not believe is already condemned, because he has not believed in the name of the One and Only Son of God.
John 3:17-18 Holman Christian Standard Bible
What to Do?
I am not advocating nor decrying boycotts. The heart of my post is to challenge believers to take their authority in the Spirit realm first, and of course, if convicted and led, follow through with corresponding actions on earth.
My concern is that Believers will boycott Target and feel somehow satisfied at that and fail to inventory their own heart - where have we compromised in allowing perversion to take over our culture: justifications of "it's only a movie, song, entertainment"? I blogged a few years ago about why I was not going to watch Magic Mike. The number of Christian women who scoffed my desire to keep my heart pure was astounding. The fingers cannot be pointed at Target alone in this.
While we may not be in the board room casting a vote for the Target policy, do not be deceived: we have given a resounding “yay” or “nay” to these ever declining standards with every ticket purchase, download, or viewing of something that was “permissible but not profitable.”
How many voices raised in anger towards Target have raised their voices to the heavens to take authority over principality and strongholds? How many who have fasted from traversing the Target aisles have fasted secular media as a prayer point for Target executives' understandings and salvation? Or for their trans-neighbor to know Christ?
I say if you shop Target: Love intensefully. And declare the Word over every aisle you shop, smile at every passerby.
I say if you feel you ought not shop target, love intensefully, declare the Word over Target and your community in passing and fervently daily.
"For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places." Ephesians 6:12
Sex Crime Victims
A house guest, as in my parents invited him to live with us, unknowing of his messed-up mind, molested me when I was in first grade. I did not realize what had happened until I was an adult. As an adult, I experienced molestation and date rape. I realize and am not blind to the existence of sexual predators. I understand and share the concern of many that this gender-neutral bathroom policy will be another way for predators to violate the safety of children and women.
However, I also understand that IF you are a Christian, you have Holy Spirit. Listen intently. We all have the ability to fill ourselves daily with His presence and to hear His guidance of when or when not to use a facility. I cannot tell you how many times Holy Spirit has saved me and my family from harm -- life threatening, life altering situations. I'll share one now, as an example.
In 2000, I noticed a leak in our bathroom. I intended to call the plumber the following day. Holy Spirit nudged, "Call him tonight." I ignored. But He persisted, so I called. The next morning the plumber came first thing. He managed to get grease on my white floor mat (Oh, how I love white and light colors in interiors, but my children have altered my ability to implement, for now.) He left, I stared at the carpet, bent to pick it up, and Holy Spirit instructed, "Not now." I wondered, "What? Ok."
I packed my gym bag and dressed my one year old. Holy Spirit again interrupted my plans, "Wait, not now." So, I paused. "OK." I set down my bag, and played blocks with my daughter. About 30-45 minutes later, Holy Spirit instructed, "Wash your rug now." So, I did.
My washer and dryer were in the back of the garage, right beside the door to the back yard. We had two blue heelers, playful. Our backyard backed up to an alley used for garbage collection and the occasional pedestrian or cyclist. I put the rug in the washer, carrying Abby on my hip. I returned to the living room and continued playing with Abby. Our play is interrupted by "THA-WUMP. THA-WUMP. THA-WUMP." The washing machine was off balance and making quite a ruckus. I went to the garage to re-position the load. While out there, I called for the Izzy and Cruiser, our blue heelers, who had been napping on the back porch. I threw sticks for them, towards the back alley, which was at least 20 yards from the porch. We played a couple of minutes, then Abby and I went back to our block building.
About 30 minutes later, Holy Spirit told me I could leave for the gym now. As I opened the door, I noticed a forensic unit at my next door neighbor's house. I called my neighbor, who works and was not home. He told me that his home had been burglarized, and his wife almost assaulted. The perpetrator had used the back alleys to enter properties in the neighborhood that morning, and he was looking for homes without residents present. My neighbor's wife's vehicle was not visible from the alley way, nor was mine. However, my dogs and very loud washing machine were both visible and audible at the exact time the perpetrator was turning down the alley to "spy the land."
I prayed for my neighbors' peace, and thanked God for protecting my home and family through His leading. I was reminded of Psalm 91, which promises that those who seek God as their refuge will also see "a thousand fall at your side, and ten thousand at your right, but none shall come near you." Not that God respects people, His offer of protection is to everyone, it's our choice to accept.
Why Are Christians Surprised? It's Prophesied
The REAL Target of Gender Neutrality
“So God created man in His own image;
He created him in the image of God;
He created them male and female.”
Genesis 1:27 HCSB
This is what is behind the gender neutrality battle: to prove God a liar, to prove He is non-existant, that He is not the one true God. This is the heartbeat behind the mandate that teachers no longer refer to their class as “boys and girls”, but “friends”… to strip away every last reinforcement of who we are created to be, and in Whose image we have been created.
We must stand for truth: that EVERY person is created in the image of God. Every person has value, every person has worth. God cares enough about our identity that we have been all created with unique fingerprints. Don’t peel off our fingerprints. Don’t peel off yours.
Respectful comments welcome
As always, I welcome intelligent, respectful dialogue and comments. Rude remarks will be removed.
Have a wonderful day!