Is Your Tag Showing?

12 Jun

I get a kick out of the Burlington Coat Factory ads, encouraging customers with their “brag about it” advertising of their great prices.

In each commercial, a woman compares what she bought at Burlington vs. what others pay in major department stores.

I felt like I was running my own ad after I returned home from eating out last night.

My husband and I went out to eat at Outback Steakhouse, using a gift card from a relative. We enjoyed the meal and went home.

Then, to my chagrin, I realized the price tag from my new sweater, purchased at Burlington, was still attached to the back of my sweater! Only I wasn’t thinking, “Great! Everyone will know that I got a great deal … I’m bragging about Burlington.”

No, I was thinking, “Oh great. Everyone will know I had another senior moment!”

But it got me thinking about tags. We all wear them, you know.

Some tags we choose – Wife, mother, writer, executive, teacher, etc. Others are given to us – godly, fun, a worrier, stubborn, kind, a friend, wise ….

We wear our tags (labels) every day. They identify and describe us. Sometimes they open doors; sometimes they limit us. We’re proud of some tags, but ashamed of others.

I’m always amazed how many tags we wear that we can choose, if we desire and plan to do so.

The tag I always want to display is the one that says “Christian.” Though some may misunderstand the tag or even redefine it in our culture, I keep going back to the biblical tag.

“… the disciples were first called Christians at Antioch” (Acts 11:26). An important city in the Roman Empire – adorned with public baths, aqueducts, theaters, temples and lots of pagans – Antioch eventually became an important city in the spread of the Gospel. The first believers fled to this city after Stephen’s Tag_Christianmartyrdom, and Barnabas and Paul preached there.

“Christian” is a word the Antiochians gave Christ-followers; it was a descriptive term. These early New Testament believers were Jews who became disciples of “the Christ,” the Messiah, and they were glad to wear His name. They lived for Jesus and walked in His ways, glorifying God in His name (1 Peter 4:16).

Many believe the term “Christian” was actually a derogatory term – a term of denigration and abuse. But the disciples who loved Jesus embraced the name with joy, willing to suffer for His name. But the point is, they were “called” this name, given this name. People around them saw them becoming “little Christs” and acknowledged the similarities. Their tag was showing.

Which makes me wonder.

Do people see my Christian tag? If not, what is in the way?

By the way, our tag doesn’t have to be that particular word for people to know we belong to Christ. Our tag might read: “believer,” “disciple,” “brother/sister in the Lord,” “servant/bondservant,” “the faithful/the elect,” or “saint.”

But the meaning will be clear. We are not of this world (John 15:19; 1 John 2:15); we are not to conform to it (Romans 12:2). If we are living in the power of Christ, the world will know we are from a different kingdom, living for a different Lord.

Is your tag showing?

– Dawn

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