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Saturday, November 7, 2009


"It matters less what people think of me
than what they think of Jesus Christ because of me."
~ my adopted motto, original author unknown

"You are the light of the world... Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven."
Matthew 5:14-16 (NKJV)


My friend Bradley Moore publishes the blog "Shrinking the Camel," which regularly examines the integration of faith at work. His post this week ("How Important is Your Image?") included remarks from
Michell Corbett on the topic: "Which of these are most important to your career advancement: Performance, Image, or Exposure (P.I.E.)?"

Brad elaborated, and asks his readers, "Does this blatant self-promotion run opposite to the good Christian values of humility, servanthood and putting others before ourselves? Is there a biblical basis for career advancement?"

Because I've got my foot in the door of the publishing industry, this is an issue I've had to grapple with. I'd like to share with you a portion of my response.

"What people think of me matters less [than what they think of Jesus Christ because of me], but it very much matters. In this world, I am the image of Jesus to others. I want to project it with all possible excellence, because exposure of bad image will work against me, and without performance to back it up, image will eventually crumble.

"In thirty years, I’ve run the gamut with image... I now aspire to present an attractive, approachable and modest persona which projects the genuine light of Jesus wherever I’m seen. Even if my plans are to stay home today, I am conscious that I project an image (and example) to my husband and children, whoever comes to the door, and any divine appointment the Lord’s scheduled on that quick trip for groceries.

"I hated the idea of self-promotion online when I encountered the concept. It seemed to run counter to humility. 'I want to promote You, not me!' was my whine to the Lord. He gave me a prayer: Please enable me to build a solid platform which gives prominence to You.

"I sometimes fumble, but this remains my goal."

I have been crucified with Christ;
it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me;
and the life which I now live in the flesh
I live by faith in the Son of God,
who loved me and gave Himself for me.
Galatians 2:20 (NKJV)

Contrasting points-of-view, questions and feedback are invited. Post to "Comments" or e-mail toŸ%1Cp. Copyright 2009, Anne Lang Bundy, all rights reserved.


  1. Look at that smile! Love that picture. Promote away ;) You're His perfect representative.

  2. brad always leaves me with a lot to chew on.

  3. "It matters less what people think of me than what they think of Jesus Christ because of me."

    If it were not for your "self promotion," I would understand less my own walk with Christ. Again, motive is everything.

    People in leadership have to guard against becoming idols to others. Maybe that it is why it is important to remind people that we are human, struggle at times, and "daily" depend on Christ.

    Blessings Anne... :-)

  4. Self promotion for the sake of displaying Christ is somewhat essential. Even if we are striving to be more humble, we are in effect calling people to "look how humble I am" because we are trying to be an example for Christ.

    The danger comes when the 'fame' becomes too much for our human minds and we begin to promote ourselves for our own, worldly ends. We all know of Christians in ministry for whom this has become the case.

    Thanks, Anne.

  5. T. Anne, thanks! Would you believe when I wrote this I wasn't thinking about the fact that our family portrait was today? It really made me happy when the photographer liked my smile and my daughter said, "She smiles like that all the time."

    nAncY, I agree that Brad's got some great content on his site. Among the dozens of blogs I follow, it's one I usually can't resist commenting on.

  6. I see Jesus shining through you, shine on beautiful sis. I love you.

  7. Russell and Peter,

    The not "becoming idols" is something I'm still trying to get right. I'm honored by the many compliments I get, but have a hard time figuring out how to make sure God receives the credit for enabling me, without being overly self-effacing about it. "Building up the body" means building me up, too, because I'm part of the body.

    I'm also painfully aware that at the same time I feel awkward with compliments, my pride craves affirmation. My insecurities want confirmation that I'm valued by others. I want to feel needed, though I know I'm merely a channel for the only One Who is needed.

    I suppose it's good that none of us get terribly comfortable with any of this. The disquieting dichotomy of trying to be humble without becoming aware of any success in it will probably always be part of the Christian life.

    "True humility is not an abject, groveling, self-despising spirit. It is but a right estimate of ourselves as God sees us." (Tryon Edwards)

    All that said, thank you both for your compliments. I'm truly blessed to hear from Russell that the Lord enhances understanding through me. And Peter, I don't think I'll ever forget "so stinking deep." ;D

  8. Annie, I like to think of you as someone who is not striving to "impress" others with your wise and insightful words, but as someone who wants to "impress upon them" their need to take a closer look at our Lord Jesus, and that He would impress upon them their need for Him and "His" words.

  9. Beautiful. I just read your latest comment on Brad Moore's site, and only say: wise words. Also, I detect and admire (and aspire to) the same goal you express .I'm in process of reading the revised edition of Billy Graham/s Autobiography and feel that attitude was the key to his being used so greatly. One other thing: If you haven't heard "I want to be like Jesus," (Not the one in the hymnbooks), your heart would welcome it to your repertoire of sacred music. If you aren't familiar with that song, I'll try to locate the author for you. keep up your good work. dk

  10. Mary, your kindness enhances your beauty. I aspire to model your image!

    Don, I thank you for the reminder of heart and attitude being a foremost part of our image.

  11. I struggle with this one and whine from time to time as well. It can get confusing, this platform building business sometimes. God has made it clear to me recently that selfish ambition is not okay. Willingness to honor Him and use my gifts is rewarded.

    And to your point, I agree that the dichotomy is a good sign. If we all ran out and were quick to have praise and attention thrown our way in pursuit of ambition or fame, then something is wrong. Our focus is whacked.

  12. Wendy, I see His light in you, give Him glory for it, and am blessed!


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