What Is Your Brand?
Regardless of our station in life—rich or poor, male or female, young or seasoned—-we are all surrounded by the brands that we associate with: are you a Coco Chanel fan? Do you like Levi’s? Perhaps you’re a Mercedes person, or how about a favorite line of food? Are you umbilically attached to an I-Phone? Maybe you’re deeply committed to the Pittsburgh Penguins. . . or the Pitt Panthers? If sports aren’t your thing, how about a favorite author. . . you prefer C.S. Lewis or Tolkien? Maybe music is your thing and you’d like nothing better than an evening listening to Sinatra. Whatever the case, whatever the taste, we all have our preferences which means that we often identify with certain brands.
Most of these things I’ve mentioned change as we age, as our tastes change. Many of these things change as society introduces new and improved brands. And because the shelf-life of many of the brands is somewhat generational, their footprints are soon lost as waves of other products, habits, and interests replace our brand du jour. Even so-called movements, such as Hitler’s 1000-year Reich, was over in 12 years. While the swastika was not a brand we’d ever consider worthy of extolling, millions died for it, identifying with it until their end. So brands are not only things, but philosophies and behaviors and lifestyles.
So what brands would your friends associate with you? What would your co-worker say about what he associates with you? Is it a kind spirit, and a sense of optimism? Is it an unwavering hope that no matter how grim circumstances look, you continue to be a light to others? Are you an encourager? About what are you most passionate? (“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” Matthew 6:21) Are the brands that you advertise material things (clothes, toys, etc.), or are your treasures those character traits developed only through a life of devotion to the Lord?
Young people. . . who are your role models who you hope to be like someday? All of the earthly brands will pass away, but the fruit of the spirit (love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, self-control) will always, in the eyes of the Lord, be in vogue. In short, is Christ the brand about which you care the most?
1 Peter 3:15-16
But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.