I am a huge fan of marketing.
I earned a degree in Business Management and loved the courses I took in marketing! I remember one of the main commercials that got my attention. I was not a fan of this sport at that time, but no one could deny the effect of what this short commercial series achieved. Here are some of the effects of what this marketing series did achieve. Increased market share of athletic shoes from 18% to 43% and sales from $877M to $9.2B (yes that is B for billion)! People would line up for $150-$200 shoes like they do for the new iPhone today! People wanted to be this person, fly like this person and play like this person! Have you figured out the campaign?
This is such a powerful message. Listen to those “what if” statements again.
There have been times that I and my wife have questioned why we attend the congregation we attend. We start asking questions and making statements such as: Why do we come here? We do not get anything out of the service. Who likes this music anyway?
James has something to say about all this. Side note, I love getting into scripture! It has a way of grabbing you and giving you many opportunities to grow. We must look at who James was, to begin with. He was a brother of Jesus and disagreed with most of what Jesus said and did during His lifetime. It took His death and resurrection for James to see the light! And we call Thomas as doubtful! The first two things James talked about was how hard it is going to be (James 1:1-15) and then to do it anyway! The problem with how my bride and I asked those questions was how they were centered. They were all about us. Not about Him. Just as Jordan asked what if no one was watching, would he still play the game? He would because of his love for the game. It does not matter who watches or if he is followed around. His pure love of a game. Anyone want to guess where I am going with this?
If we are in His will, then we are instructed to do it anyway! James was not saying anything new here. He was instructing us to be fruitful. He tells us to not merely be hearers of the Word but to be doers (vs. 22-25). Growth can only happen if we apply what is learned. The fruit is produced through those actions and if we remain fruitless, we are trimmed and tossed aside. We cannot think our contribution is too small or insignificant.
Every child had such a small contribution. When placed together, it more than fills a need. I am sure many have heard the saying “little is much when God is in it.”
We do it anyway. Even if we cannot see what the results will be. Even if we cannot understand why He calls us to do what we do. Even if we cannot see the big picture. Part of our faith is doing what God has called us to do regardless if we understand or see His reasoning.
I heard a joke on the radio last week. A sailor was making his rounds checking out some islands believed to be inhabited. He saw a line of smoke come from one and went to investigate. He found one man on a beach with three huts.
He asked: “Are you the only one here?”
“Yes! I am!” he replied with overwhelming excitement and relief.
“Why the three huts?” asked the sailor.
“This one is my house. and that one is my church.”
“What about the one over there?”
“Well, that’s where I used to go to church.”
We need to stop looking for the perfect church. They are all filled with imperfect people. We need to go to church for Him and not us. How about changing some of Mr. Jordan’s questions from earlier?
What if we went to church regardless if anyone is watching?
What if we went to glorify God and not ourselves?
What if we went to serve Him and not to be served?