Taking the Epistle

A biblical journey through the epistles

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An unpopular view on the Christian boycott of Target?


An unpopular view on the Christian boycott of Target?

I read with interest on social media of a supposed Christians boycotting of Target because of the bathroom policy that was set out recently allowing men who identify as women being allowed to enter the women’s bathrooms and as shown by some test cases, people are not even being questioned if they used a facility that was previously banned from use. (to date there is a petition of 50,000 signatures) To do this I plan to look at this and I know that this will be controversial but I have never been shy to stay away from controversy and I really doubt that I ever will.

My view as a Christian man

First of all, let me say that I think that it is wrong that a domain that is reserved by sex has been alerted in this manner, both myself and the bible believe that this is a wrong move by Target and I do honestly believe that it will cost them money to be seen as culturally aware and I feel that their competition are watching this to see which way the wind blows. I understand why the Christian community as well as concerned parents would be considering a boycott and I am here to examine the pros and cons of such action.

Let me first say to the community who are reading this and would classify themselves as “gender confused” that Jesus loves you, just as you are and he desires a relationship with you. Just as I had to do, you have to realize your sins before you recognize the need for a Savior. I also recognize that there is a portion of those folks who have set themselves against God and will not seek Jesus under any circumstances and I pray for you all (not in a threatening manner but as one who is concerned and wants everyone go find Jesus as their Savior!)

What was the policy?

The Target website released the following statement through many news outlets…link

“Recent debate around proposed laws in several states has reignited a national conversation around inclusivity. So earlier this week, we reiterated with our team members where Target stands and how our beliefs are brought to life in how we serve our guests.

Inclusivity is a core belief at Target. It’s something we celebrate. We stand for equality and equity, and strive to make our guests and team members feel accepted, respected and welcomed in our stores and workplaces every day.

We believe that everyone—every team member, every guest, and every community—deserves to be protected from discrimination, and treated equally. Consistent with this belief, Target supports the federal Equality Act, which provides protections to LGBT individuals, and opposes action that enables discrimination.

In our stores, we demonstrate our commitment to an inclusive experience in many ways. Most relevant for the conversations currently underway, we welcome transgender team members and guests to use the restroom or fitting room facility that corresponds with their gender identity.

We regularly assess issues and consider many factors such as impact to our business, guests and team members. Given the specific questions these legislative proposals raised about how we manage our fitting rooms and restrooms, we felt it was important to state our position.

Everyone deserves to feel like they belong. And you’ll always be accepted, respected and welcomed at Target.”

What does it mean for me as the father of a six year old daughter?

Absolutely nothing, if I am taking my child to the restroom I will do as I do now and enter the men’s room with her, enclose her in a cubicle and be between her and the other patrons at all times.

However I do conceded that someone with daughters older than myself will have reservations about sending their daughters into a restroom where there may not be only females especially those who are too old to go potty in front of their parents. I would ask that you use your best judgment, but think on this you were happy to send them in solo to a room where people who may be attracted to the same sex were?

Am I going to boycott?

Let me get one thing straight, I have no desire to go to Target at the best of times because I am a guy who does not like shopping so when I go it is usually because I am with my wife and child or I am there to finish up shopping for an event or I have been sent on an errand most likely for my mother in law because she uses the pharmacy there so I have no idea whether I will boycott but I certainly I am not going to get all heat up about Target enforcing a policy. I say this because when I was buying “My Little Ponies” for my daughter at Target in previous times I have visited solo I was under no illusion that I was funding a Christian company. I don’t expect Target to share my morals or my thoughts or beliefs. They are a secular company who are only looking after the bottom line and trying to keep profits at an acceptable level to their shareholders.

Truth be told, I know people who work in Targets locally and they are good folks and two of the females in my church work in a local target also. These are folks that would all be unemployed should a successful boycott take place so are you willing to but your fellow Christians (obviously Target employs people regardless of faith) out of a job? Again I am not telling you to boycott or not, whilst this is a hot topic now, I do wonder how long it will go on for?

Why not just a third bathroom?

Why not? It is a sensible idea because Walmart have done this in my local town where they have a Male/Female/Family or disabled bathroom and everyone is included and I don’t see a let’s not shop at Walmart? (Certainly not for that reason) What makes it difficult to do that now is it would be painted as a removal of rights.

When will it be policed?

Unfortunately this is being done on an honor system at present so unless someone is attacked in a bathroom and it is actively linked (I am being very careful in my terminology) to this new policy then the status quo will remain the same unless Target decides to change it’s policy (That would be difficult due the removal of rights we looked at in the last paragraph)

What I am expecting is that not everyone is honest and there will be people looking to exploit this to their own ends, we live in a fallen world and I truly hope and pray nothing bad happens however we do know that there are people in this world who would attempt to use this situation to their advantage to prey on people. I pray that Target begins to police the bathrooms at their cost before something happens.

I say the previous paragraph because in a large part of Targets heartland (the Midwest and the South) they are having a really bad PR black eye and have truly misjudged the depth of feeling by concerned patrons of their stores (not all Christians) and if something happens then that PR black eye would be even worse.

The line used to be clear now it is untenable

Remember the good old days, when a man who had male anatomy used the restroom that was assigned to him as did the female? That was easy to police and whilst it wasn’t perfect and there were lewd conduct in bathrooms long before the 19th of this month it was the rules and it at least made sense to the majority of Americans. (And for that matter this guy who was born of British blood) It was that easy we could explain it to a child and now we have exchanged the truth for a lie and are calling a man what is not a man and a woman what is not a woman using logical definitions for what those words actually mean as opposed to what culture tells us that they mean because culture will always change with public opinion.

By all means protest but make it a legitimate one

I have seen all manners of Facebook posts with silly protestations of guys being filmed walking into the ladies room in target when they have no business being there. The fact they are filming in a bathroom also makes me nervous and another who asked for the Target’s employee discount as he felt that day like he was a Target employee, others stated that they wanted to fill up their carts and make the employee cash it up and then ask the bathroom policy and then walk out leaving the goods if the employee answers honestly. I believe that such frivolous protests will make Target not take seriously the legitimate ones.

Target has opened the door to protest because as it states in their own press release “Everyone deserves to feel like they belong. And you’ll always be accepted, respected and welcomed at Target.”

What’s my angle in all of this?

I have no agenda, I prayed a lot before I wrote this and I know that by writing this I may lose a lot of followers and the day I am not prepared to do that is the day that I should just shut up about all matters. I just wish to alert Christians to an idea that they may or may not have presented to them previously. Some contrary thinking perhaps and an idea that they would not regularly hear. My desire is to see all of my readers come to faith in Christ and those who have come to a deeper understanding of God and the plan that God has for your lives. I am a heterosexual man who is happily married some 10 years and has a lovely 6 year old daughter. I teach a bible study and mentor a few folks in my neighborhood. I am a conservative Christian in the Calvary Chapel movement and I am a reluctant Target customer. (As I dislike shopping)

How does this protest win people to Jesus?

Really it doesn’t and that is my concern. It is hard enough to engage folks in a conversation about Jesus without dealing with the negative backlash from folks just waiting to whack you with the “See, intolerant Christians” brush and I am against anything that will push people further away from my messiah. We are in a spiritual battle in order to save people from eternal damnation, with that at stake I have Target waaaay down on my priority list.

Why are you being a Target apologist?

Actually I am not, If you feel led to boycott then by all means do so but as stated above it is a sideshow that distracts us from our true mission here and that is that of the great commission in Matthew 28. The actions of Christians do not really show a great deal of love and my point is to make an alternate view and give a possible dissenting voice?

Whether you boycott Target will make me no richer or poorer because I have no dog in this fight, what I will say is that if you wish to make a stand at all of those companies that have either given money to LGBT charities or organizations then you will be hard pushed to find somewhere you will not be boycotting! We all have the right to free speech and I am exercising mine here and I expect some contrary views and I am a big enough boy to handle that! I do have some legitimate concerns regarding this policy and I have stated them above…

I invite all comments and they are only moderated for profanity. If you have any questions of comments then please do so below.


If you want to reach your city…


…ride the bus!

See what the common people see, and then you will see things from a different perspective and possibly enrich your understanding of what they are going through. Then and only then can you look at developing enough of a relationship to introduce Jesus into their lives.

I will admit it, I am a people watcher, I may be casually reading my bible or playing on my cell phone, but I would have to say that I have one eye on what is around me. Where I live these days, there is not as much issues at what I am used to from riding the bus in the city of Glasgow. I have rode on trains after soccer games when bottles have been flying, people being assaulted (or much worse) all based on the result of a mixture of alcohol, people’s behaviour and the result of a sporting event.

So when I rode the bus on Monday morning (I had an event I had to attend that I was carpooling to so it made good economical sense to just ride the bus and allow my wife a vehicle for the day) I knew I was not stepping onto a vehicle that was in the middle of a drunken war, I knew that there would be about 6-8 people the whole duration of the journey and I could more of less guess where these creatures of habit would alight this vehicle.

But it gave me a heart for them, a heart that I have not had before. You may have remarked that I have commented on the leadership of the church in a previous blog, however today I would like to address us laypeople, those who have not accepted a call to leadership, have not been asked or for one reason or another we are not held to that same standard.

Blog articles like this are few and far between because each church differs how they handle the discipleship process between the altar call and being co-opted into ministry. But as soon as we enter the war torn vehicle that I have described in the earlier paragraph, we sign on to an Army that will be hated in this lifetime. It took an action as simple as what is described in the lyrics of this Sunday school song:

“I have decided to follow Jesus,
I have decided to follow Jesus,
I have decided to follow Jesus,
No turning back, no turning back”

Once we “sign on” and we get our “part one orders” (British Army terminology there) we find out our mission is simple, grow in God (Sanctification) and reach others (Witnessing) and herein lies the problem.


We have to be evangelists, we have to reach people where they are because we sure are not going to have them battering our doors to come in. We have to be real, be “urban evangelists” have the courage to talk to strangers that we have just had cordial chats with before. I learned from a great missionary couple in Glasgow, Scotland where the wife would use the same store, try to talk to the same checkers, develop relationships and then invite them over to chat.

People buy in from friends my dear friends. We have to be real, admit we don’t have it all flat packed and allow folks to be affected by our lives and how they see Jesus moving within us. The “Great Commission” in the gospel of Matthew tells us that we are supposed to “go forth and make disciples” (not converts) so that tells us once we have saved them from the lake of fire, we continue to invest until they are ready to go out and do likewise. That is our job as the folks who are out there on a day by day, month by month basis.


…check your dosage of tablets

About a year ago I came across something that was rather interesting, but at the same time a little disturbing. I am very much a gadget guy as anyone who has met me personally will attest to, I love playing with apps, love finding out how things work, love the latest in technology so I can keep up with trends.

Anyways, I went into my local Target store in the city of Visalia, California and picked up one of the nook tablets, as it was Saturday I was curious about the Scottish soccer results, so I clicked on the internet explorer icon, and you can guess what had been looked at before I got there, quite a few choice websites.

So if you want to do a spiritual barometer of your city, go into an electronics store and have a look at what people are looking at in a public place and you can only imagine what they are looking at in private.

These people need prayer, both the ones on the bus and the ones on the tablets, they need Jesus and they need to be counselled and discipled. They need to be introduced to the prince of peace and a life that involves a new eternal destination.

That is your mission, do you chose to accept it?

I pray this message was a blessing and please feel free to comment, share and link as the LORD leads.