The Reason in the Season
Atheists have become evangelistic as of late. The group "American Atheists" has launched an advertising campaign that seeks to take back the holidays from Christians. They have paid for billboards to be erected that claim that "You Know It's a Myth: This Season, Celebrate Reason." The group claims that the ads are designed to embolden "closet atheists" who "go along to get along, to "attack the myth that Christianity owns the solstice season" and to raise awareness (and one presumes money) of its group.
What should be our response to people who go out of their way to ridicule our faith, even at a time of the year when that faith is the most visible? Well, there is on old saying that "Living well is the best revenge." The very best way we can defend our faith is to treat its detractors and opponents with respect as we live out our faith in positive and proactive ways. The very worst thing we can do when someone belittles our faith is to respond in a way that is beneath our faith. We need to show everyone that faith works, and that means we must live it in positive and loving ways. That is exactly the point that Peter makes in todays reading from 1 Peter 2:15-17 when he says--
For it is God’s will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish men. Live as free men, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as servants of God. Show proper respect to everyone: Love the brotherhood of believers, fear God, honor the king.
Show proper respect to everyone. Silence ignorant talk by the way that we live. Show the world that faith works, that it makes us mature, whole people of integrity and joy. When we live right before the world, these kinds of criticism just loose their punch