I often learn new and fascinating fact in church. Unfortunately they are often random things that aren’t really part of what I should have learned. Pastor did a great sermon yesterday from Matthew. It had something to do with being full of the Spirit of God and acting like it. I try really hard to pay attention, but I get easily distracted and there are so many distracting things in the sound booth.
Of course I do learn things. Yesterday I learned about the blue laws. I had heard of these kinds of things in the past, and I even know that some of these laws still exist in certain communities. They limit what can be sold or done on Sunday. Most of these laws are beyond absurd.
According to my pastor the ice cream soda was invented by accident around the turn of the century in a drug store. Back in the day people would often get creme sodas. I can attest to getting these at a particular restaurant in Norman, OK. They called them “Italian Cream Sodas.” They were made by hand with syrups, soda water, and cream. From what I understand this is pretty much the formula they used back in the days when the local drug stores were making up their sodas. Anyways, one guy ran out of cream but had some ice cream which he substituted for the cream in his cream soda.
The new ice cream soda became a regularly requested item and then spread through the nation as a new national craze. Then the church stepped in. Concerned pastors started preaching against the sin of indulgence and got people to rally against the evils of ice cream sodas. They eventually got laws passed that made it illegal to make or sell ice cream sodas on Sunday.
Eventually an ingenious merchant came up with a new marketing gimmick. On Sunday he would prepare a special ice cream soda without the soda. He put ice cream and syrup into a soda glass and called it a “Sunday” special. This new confection quickly grew in popularity to the point that most Americans have had a Sundae even if they have never had a classic Ice Cream Soda.
It bothers me that the Church has wasted so much energy complaining. We still do it. We make it our business to let the World know how sinful they are, and what is worse we tend to make up sins just to beat them down. This is why I have so much trouble with legislating morality and why I think we need to be more focused on being a light or good salt rather than shining lasers into people’s eyes or pouring nasty filthy salt into their wounds.
This Sunday we should all go order a classic ice cream soda to celebrate our freedom from the Law and then find some way to spread the Love of God.
How will you be a beacon of God’s grace, mercy, and love?