If you’re gonna wear a label…

Doesn’t that bowl of citrus look great?  I love the vibrancy of the colors and the way they match my kitchen.  Obviously not what many people look for in fruit, but there you have it.  Aesthetics can be really important, you know.  (smile)

I was really excited to find these grapefruits with their Ruby Red label in a local market not too long ago.  The main reason for my excitement was that I absolutely love Ruby Red grapefruit–and this was still pretty early to be getting them in Mississippi, so I stocked up!  The dark red color and the sweet taste–great combination.  There’s nothing else quite like them.  Given the opportunity, I would happily banish all other kinds of grapefruit in favor of the Ruby Red ones…so, it was with great anticipation that I brought these home, arranged them beautifully and waited to have my first one for breakfast the next morning.

Now, do take a moment and go look at the second photo again.  Please take note of the label.  Now take a look at the color of the pulp.  Nope.  They do not match.  I can’t tell you how disappointed I was.  Oh, I ate it, but it was quite a let-down.

Ever the optimist, I tried again the next morning…and had the same result.  For sanity’s sake, I chose not to take and post all of the pictures I could have made as I worked my way through that bowl of grapefruit.  Basically, they would all look just like the second photo.  I think that the next time I see that label on a grapefruit, the market manager is going to have to cut one open just to convince me it is accurate.

And that is what brings me to the real point of this blog post:  If you’re going to wear a label, please BE what you’re advertising yourself to be.  This is a helpful point if you’re buying fruit, but considerably more critical if you’re a human…

If you’re going to be a friend…really be one.

If you’re going to be a great parent, a loyal employee, a good student, a blessing–a whatever-you-want-to-fill-in-the-blank-with!…really be one.

and…

If you’re going to say you’re a Christian…well, you know…really be one. Being a Christian is not a default label just because you don’t belong to another major belief system–it really means something totally different.  We can’t do anything universally about those who have been given the label by those who don’t understand the difference.  However, there is one sure-fire way we can counteract that behavior right where we live.  If you are going to say you’re a Christian, then be a passionate, joyous, committed, consistent Christ-follower just like we’re called to be!

Oh, yes!  A side note to those who don’t believe like I do (yet!  LOL):  When you look at Christians, please remember that we are not perfect.  (surprise!)  We will mess up–sometimes in spades!  Living for God is a continuing process, not a one-time event.  And (this is important!) as my Sunday School teacher Nick said this past week, “We are not the standard.  Jesus Christ is.”  If we confuse you, please know that we’re all at different stages of our growth process–just as children learn life skills at differing speeds, so do we.  Look past us and to our God.  Read the Bible for yourself and ask God to show you what HE intends for us to be…that’s what we’re supposed to be doing, too.  Who knows?  If we both do that, we might find we have a lot more to talk about than you think.

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