American Atheists (AA) last week launched a "billboard campaign featuring a young girl writing a message to Santa Claus that reads: 'Dear Santa, All I want for Christmas is to skip church! I'm too old for fairy tales'," reports Stoyan Zaimov at Christian Post.
"The AA billboards have gone up in major cities like Memphis, Nashville, St. Louis and Fort Smith, as well as in more residential areas near churches and schools," CP reports.
A church in Alma, Ark., responded with its own billboard ad, which states, "Questions, Doubts, Curiosity? All welcome at Grace," according to CP.
"Our goal is not to oppose their message, but rather to respond with love and support. We actually welcome their desire to support those who have felt alienated by believers and start discussion between and among the Atheist and Christian communities," Grace Church states on its website.
Two comments. First, the church does well to welcome those with doubts, who question, and are curious. The Biblical worldview affirms the human mind as sourced in the rationality of the Creator. Therefore, churches and the Christian community in general ought to be safe places for those who want to consider and discuss whether Christianity is true and therefore warrants their commitment.
Second, there is no need to think "love and support" is somehow an alternative to opposing the message of atheists. If atheism is false and harmful to human freedom and dignity, to "love and support" includes refuting that unfortunate message. "Speaking the truth in love" is how Ephesians 4:15 puts it.
Jesus epitomizes love, and yet his Sermon on the Mount (Matt. 5-7) directly challenged the settled opinion and cultural powers of his day, even as it now challenges the settled opinion and cultural powers in our own day. This is good news for thinking human beings, but not so good news for the fairy tales and superstitions of atheism.