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what’s your brand?

Have you ever found yourself asking someone this question?

Wanna go get a starbucks?


Want me to pick you up a Timmy’s?


Hmmm… last time I checked, there’s no such thing as a “starbucks” or a “timmie’s”.   I believe we used to call it a “coffee”.


In fact, today during my lunch break I found myself searching for my personal preference, a Starbucks (sorry Timmy lovers).   I was in a northeast community that had no Starbucks in sight.   Finally, after passing two Tim Hortons, I finally thought to myself; “Fine, I’ll go to Tim Horton’s and get myself a Starbucks”…..  Once I realized my thought, I laughed to myself.

You know a company has branded itself so well that the company name becomes the identity of the product they sell.   Take Kleenex for example.  There’s no such thing as a “kleenex”.  There’s a “tissue” but “Kleenex” is the name of the company.   They have branded themselves so well, they’ve replaced the name of the very product they sell.


If you can get to that point, as a business, you pretty much have the market.


Here’s a thought: whether we realize it or not, our very lives reveal a “brand”, so to speak.   Our belief system, values, what we deem important, is written on every fabric on our inner and outer self.  Like a cow gets branded, so our lives are branded with whatever stamp we choose to present.  (no, I did not just mean to compare us with a cow….)

Just as marketers put a lot of work into branding their product, we are being branded into a visible “product” by the things we allow to influence us.   What influences us the most, wins, and is what is shown to the world around us.


The problem is that many times we WANT to show ourselves one way, but our actions end up showing something completely different.  Why would this be?


Our intentions are different than our actions.  And in this world, it’s actions that speak.

So knowing this, I’m wondering if those of us who call ourselves Christians are living that “brand” out?   Can people look at us and see it showing in our speech and actions?


There once was a man named Saul who lived years ago – just after Jesus walked the earth.  He had “branded” his life with persecuting and even killing those who called themselves followers of Christ.   If you mentioned his name, he was known for doing this, and was feared by many.   He was a devout Jew who knew all the rules and did everything by the book.  But God has amazing ways of seeing past the “brands” we try and create for ourselves.  He had a new brand in mind for Saul.   One day, God showed Himself to Saul, changed his name to Paul and completely re-branded the man.


Check out what Paul says happened:


What actually took place is this: I tried keeping rules and working my head off to please God, and it didn’t work. So I quit being a “law man” so that I could be God’s man. Christ’s life showed me how, and enabled me to do it. I identified myself completely with him. Indeed, I have been crucified with Christ. My ego is no longer central. It is no longer important that I appear righteous before you or have your good opinion, and I am no longer driven to impress God. Christ lives in me. The life you see me living is not “mine,” but it is lived by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. I am not going to go back on that. (Galatians 2:19-20)

Paul then “branded” himself with evidence of following Christ full out – and HE then was persecuted for it.


I’m just curious what it would look like if all those who claim to believe in God became full out followers of Christ?  What if the “brand” of Christian became more about action than just belief?  I mean, Satan himself believes in God….. clearly that doesn’t mean much then.  I mean, last time I checked, he was on the naughty list….


What if those who claim to have any measure of faith decided to put their stake in the ground to stand for Christ no matter the cost?   What if we made the change, like Paul, to go from just being “religious” to being crucified with Christ? – so that our ideas no longer live, but Christ’s design moves into our very core.


What would that do to us?


What would that do the world around us?


Maybe it would be so revolutionary that the brand of “Christ follower” would replace the old worn out brand of “religion”…..


Just a thought.

Categories: a new spirituality
  1. Charlene Z
    February 23, 2011 at 7:41 pm

    And in regards to Starbucks or Tim’s…. My pocket book always chooses Tim’s over Starbucks, but my tastebuds always love a good Starbucks as a treat once in a while… So I guess you can say I like both – I don’t have a fave. 🙂

  2. February 24, 2011 at 7:47 pm


  3. Mandi
    February 24, 2011 at 9:12 pm

    Interesting choice of words – my husband and I attend Cowboy Church in which the statement “Ride for the Brand” has an entirely different meaning
    Riding for the Brand is:
    The history of the American West is filled with these kinds of phrases that reveal the nature of the men and women who came west. “Ride for the brand” in the words of the western writer, Louis L’Amour, was “an expression of loyalty to a man’s employer or the particular outfit he rode for. It was considered a compliment of the highest order in an almost feudal society. If a man did not like a ranch or the way they conducted their affairs he was free to quit, and many did, but if he stayed on, he gave loyalty and expected it.”

    In these days, it can be a matter of courage to pick and choose God’s Outfit to work for and to be loyal to. Living with Christ’s integrity to values, really living them involves, sometimes difficult, but necessary choices. A productive and happy life come from “riding for the brand.”

    Just A thought to share 🙂

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