A very long time ago, when TV had only 13 channels – half of which did not work – the granddaddy of all pick-up lines was “What’s your sign?” (Yes, really, as in zodiac.) These days though, you might be more ‘on point’ with, “What’s your brand?” Having a brand is apparently important so that you can act appropriately when you socialize, be it in person (with the proper PPE 😊) or anywhere within the virtual world. My presumption is that it provides a greater self-confidence, as we now seem to be interacting on some level hourly with countless people in some way. There are numerous brands out there: professional brands, political brands, social justice brands, sexual / gender preference brands, dietary brands, just take your pick. A brand helps describe you in a vacuum, because again, it appears to me that is how most communication happens today – with a minimum of context.
Of course, you can have a few brands. I may be representing several myself at any particular moment. I am a senior white hetero male. (Boooooo!) I am an Italian American. (That should immediately evoke some stereotypical imagery of guinea t-shirts and flashy jewelry.) I’m also a Yankee fan. (Though I don’t think I’m as obnoxious as most are made out to be.) Now, take a moment to consider some of the brands you may have represented during your life. Are there any that mean so much to you that you would actually be concerned if you misrepresented the brand and possibly caused others to think less of you, and therefore less of the brand? We’re talking pretty serious brand loyalty now. Maybe even serious enough to have you change your behavior.
So, here’s my point. Besides the traditional male / female brands, the brand with possibly the greatest representation remains Christianity. There are supposedly 2.4 billion of us out there. Yep, that’s one in three humans. The thing about this particular brand is that it comes with a moral obligation to represent the brand and therefore, God, to the best of our ability. We do this not so much to earn brownie points with God, but to help increase the possibility of having non-believers consider the benefits of a life with God at its center. Think of vegans and gym rats who may also want to share the positive outcomes of their particular lifestyle brand in an altruistic way. The difference in the case of God and Christianity is that these lifestyle decisions extend beyond the grave. Now, think eternity.
All that said, I know that I have not been the best representative of the Christian brand and lifestyle. I know that there have been many times when I have misrepresented my brand to my family and friends, maybe in something I have said, or done, or posted somewhere. For that, I beg your forgiveness. I have had to live with these lapses and imperfections and do so with deep regret. I fear that these brand distortions could have led someone AWAY from God and have them NOT consider placing God at the center of their lives – just the opposite of my true intention. So please don’t allow my past (or future) hiccups sway you negatively. Right now with all that’s going on, and what we are dealing with this pandemic and the upcoming election, I intend to recommit myself to doing the best I can to remain true to the brand with the hope that someone out there might just consider doing the same. Feel free to call me out should I need it. 😊