1/11 – What’s Your Brand Message?
Nowadays, business people, company spokesmen, advertisers, writers, and speakers are often told that it’s very important to establish your brand. When people think of you, the company, or the product, their first thoughts should clearly pinpoint what those people or things are all about. For example, when we think of Nike®, we think of cool athletic shoes and gear. When we think of McDonald’s®, we think of burgers, fries, and the representative golden arches. When we think of Bill Gates and Steve Jobs, we think of computer stuff. When we think of Martin Luther King, Jr., we think of the advances made for Black people during the Civil Rights Movement.
The first mention of Jesus’ brand is found in Matthew 4:17. From the very start of His ministry, his brand message – just nine simple words – was clear: Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand (NKJ). If this message was important enough for Jesus’ whole life to be focused on it, let’s break it down to be sure we understand what He was saying to us:
- Repent (metanoeō) – to think differently or afterwards, that is, reconsider, morally to feel compunction, shame, hesitation, reluctance
- Kingdom (basileia) – royalty, that is, (abstractly) rule, or (concretely) a realm
- Heaven (ouranos) – the sky; by extension heaven (as the abode of God); by implication happiness, power, eternity; specifically the Gospel (Christianity)
- At hand (eggizō) – to make near, that is, approach
(Greek words and definitions from Strong’s Hebrew and Greek Dictionaries)
Jesus wants us to think differently [REPENT] in our moral life, to reconsider that about which we feel reluctance or hesitation. We’re to hold back in those cases because the realm of God in His royal reign [THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN] is on the approach, indeed is very near [AT HAND]. Jesus wants us to act upon the great salvation He provides for us.
Jesus’ life clearly illustrated His brand. Not only did He tell us how we should conduct our lives because of God being with us, He also showed us how to do so by conducting His life in total surrender to His Father.
Our lives should clearly communicate our brand as well. And in the final analysis, our brand – at least something about our lives – should be representative of the God we serve. So I need to ask the following questions: Do people see me and see something representative of my Savior? Do people think of me and think of Jesus? Do people read my words and understand that I really believe and live by all this Bible stuff I write about? Is my life the same Monday through Saturday as it is in church on Sunday mornings?
What’s your brand message? Test it today. Ask three people who know you to sum up your life. You can use some of my questions above, or simply ask them what they would say about you at your funeral. Ask them to fill in the blank: “Sharon (put your name there) was all about…” If the answers don’t include anything about Jesus, it’s time for a brand overhaul. Make the adjustments!
©2013 Sharon Norris Elliott. Feel free to forward this devotion in its entirety, including this copyright line. Leave comments, ask questions, read past devotions, or subscribe to receive these devotions daily in your e-mail at www.sanewriter.wordpress.com. Also, periodically check in at www.LifeThatMatters.net to see what’s going on in the ministry.
And pick up a copy of Sharon’s new book, Power Suit: The Armor of God Fit for the Feminine Frame, available at Christian bookstores, online, from New Hope Publishers, from the Life That Matters Ministries’ website, and now also available on Kindle!