Culture At Large

Christian Bumper Stickers

Jerod Clark

This is a bit of a follow up to the "What if Starbucks Used Church Marketing" post from last week.  Richard Reising, the church marketing author behind the video, had a post on his blog about a scene from the short where the two visitors were driving into the "Starbucks" and noticed all of the bizarre coffee bumper stickers on cars in the parking lot.

The couple were a little uncomfortable when they saw slogans like "Real Mean Love Java" and "Think This Coffee's Hot?"  Another sticker had an image of the Starbucks logo eating the Juan Valdez logo.  While the video is a parody of how churches market themselves, Reising says this scene is not meant to be a "cheap shot" at Christian bumper stickers.  Instead, he's trying to show how the stickers some Christians intentionally pick have combative overtones.

He writes:
While I fully believe that Christ portrayed the ultimate man, I’m wondering how many non-believers on the highway today fell to their knees seeking manhood after reading "Real Men Love Jesus" on the car in front of them. Jesus is awesome. He doesn’t need us telling non-believers they aren’t "real men." Knowing scripturally that only God knows our heart and that "man looks on the outside" (1 Sam 16:7), I just wonder what we are showing unspiritual people about what God is like. The chances are, my only reaction as a non-believer would be to close myself off even further. You might as well drive by and yell to someone at a stoplight, "You're not a real man!" and then drive off. If you have 10 seconds to say something to someone with your car, is that what you want to tell them?

"Think this Texas heat is hot? Wait till you get to hell." This is along the lines of "Get saved or get microwaved." It might sound cute when we say it among believers, but would you ever kick off an evangelistic effort with this door-to-door opening line? Oh yes, and we are not the biggest Darwin fans, but does our fish have to eat his fish?  I'm not saying it doesn’t work—just that combative evangelism is not necessarily the best way to open hearts.

What are your thoughts?

Topics: Culture At Large, Theology & The Church, Evangelism, The Church, News & Politics, Social Trends