Farmville Enterprise February 15, 2017
“Just do it.” “”When you care enough to send the very best” “It’s the real thing.” “Don’t leave home without it.” “The quicker picker upper” “We try harder.” “Think different.” We are familiar with many of these catchy slogans that attempt to make products or services attractive to us as consumers. Branding is the marketing practice of creating a name, symbol, design or slogan that identifies and differentiates a product from others. Almost everyone knows that reportedly “15 minutes could save you 15% on car insurance.” This message has been drilled into our heads if we watch any television or listen to the radio.
If Christians had a “brand,” what would it be? Do we embody the teachings of Jesus so well that almost everyone identifies us as disciples? Della Dixon, a friend, suggested in a presentation that for Christians “love is our brand.” We sang the old camp song “We will work with each other, we will work side by side. And we’ll guard each man’s dignity and save each man’s pride. And they’ll know we are Christians by our love, by our love. Yes, they’ll know we are Christians by our love.”
How does the world know us? What do outsiders see when looking to us as God’s Church? Do we model grace, mercy, love and kindness? The world is in desperate need of kindness. By faithfully living according to the gospel imperative we present a message that is consistent with what we profess. Loving merely through words is vastly different than loving through deeds.
Jesus said, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” (John 13:34-35) “This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters. If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in that person? Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.” (1 John 3:16-18)