"Love Is Your Greatest Gift"
Known By Our Love
35 By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another
(John 13:35, KJV).
This scripture could be a manifesto for the church, because Jesus is describing our “brand.” . The literal definition of brand is, "the name, term, design, symbol, or any other feature that identifies one seller's product distinct from those of other sellers. In the business world a brand describes what a company stands for, or how it is known.
For example, every major company has a brand. What is the first thing that you think of when Wal-Mart comes to mind? Low Prices!!!! That is their distinguishing mark. It’s what makes them different from every other retailer on the planet. In fact, they go out of their way to make sure that they beat the competitor’s price. You may witness this in price matching at the cash register, or constant and unbelievable sales that no one can beat. Regardless of how it’s achieved, they remain loyal to their brand of low prices.
Well, in this scripture, Jesus is saying that our brand is “Love.” Therefore, everything that Christians, followers of His life and teachings, do should be about protecting, advancing, and uplifting “Love.” Love is supposed to be the first thing that comes to mind when someone outside of the Church thinks of Jesus’ followers. We are to be known by our “Love.”
I believe that through thousands of years of institutionalization Christians have veered from our brand. “Love” is the furthest thing that comes to the mind of many, when describing us. It’s because we have pursued other brand connections that were not meant for us. Theological positions and or political persuasions have overshadowed our brand. We’ve made faith, healing, prosperity, heaven, church buildings, rituals and relics our brand, when all along Christ said that we are to be known by our LOVE. Now, this does not exclude any of the many foundational components of who we are no more than an occasional high price at Wal-Mart. However, 90% of the time, Wal-Mart will err on the side of Low Prices, and they preach Low Prices from the mountain tops with their deeds and their sale papers. This is why their brand is etched in our minds. The Church should be the same. Love should echo from the mountaintops in everything that we do. Every act and every word should be coated in Love, so that it’s never misunderstood what we stand for. Love is Our Brand. Love is what we do. They shall know us by our Love.
Lyndon J. Batiste
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love (1 Cor. 13:13).
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