The inspiration behind the design series aims to inform our customers/followers about how we came up with the idea for our designs. Ultimately, all of our designs come from God's vision given to us in some way. In any case, each blog in this series will focus on one design from its birth to its first sale.
Where better to start off this series with a Season 2 favourite...
Often when people ask me about my clothing brand their follow up question normally reads along the lines of...
"So you're really religious then?"
I always laugh.
Then I try and explain my faith and church to them.
In the hope that they might see that it is less about religion but more about a relationship with God.
However, it seems like this explanation always falls on deaf ears...
In the modern era, I believe that it is the hardest time for Christians to bring their family and friends to church.
In the world today the word "religion" possesses an instant negative vibe to it.
The horrific practices of organisations such as Isis and the Ku Klux Klan have stigmatised the word and the idea of religion.
They have not only polluted the minds of the individuals involved but have also heavily affected the opinions of onlookers about religion (those without faith).
I've experienced many people closing their hearts to the idea of coming to church because of the actions of these "so called" religious organisations.
And to be honest.
I can't blame these onlookers for feeling such a way.
After all, if your only exposure to religion is seeing a racist Christian organisation on YouTube (Ku Klux Klan) or seeing the attacks of Isis on the news,
Why would you ever consider entering a church?
"I don't want to be brain washed."
"I don't want to blindly follow."
These are the sort of questions Christians now have to answer when inviting their mates to church.
But how do you deal with it?
Well... I feel that the concept of our Religion|Relationship design deals with it well.
Our design stands to tell onlookers that we believe that the word Religion possesses more influence than its actual value in today's world.
In essence, when a person hears the word church they will immediately associate the word religion to it.
But religion isn't what church is about. More accurate definitions of church should involve the joy of having a relationship with God...
Onlookers may associate Church with the organised nature of Religion.
But we should be encouraging them to focus on the nature of a relationship with God.
And if they are able to open their heart to that...
then the rest will be done by God!
The idea of losing your individuality because of Religion
The organised nature of religion has attached itself to churches.
Onlookers may view church goers as all merging into becoming the same person with the same viewpoint and beliefs.
Essentially, "you lose your individuality when you come to church."
However, this couldn't be further from the truth.
In fact, it's the complete opposite...
If you look at today's society the majority of people are following the trends of the world in order to fit in.
Take for example an 18 year old embarking on their first term at university.
They have not had a sip of alcohol their whole life.
They don't know anybody and they are far away from home.
In a desperate attempt to fit in they'll drink themselves till black out so they can make new friends and ultimately fit in.
Another trend I see regularly in today's world is "stunting for the instagram."
I laughed as I wrote that as I heard that phrase from a mate who has been teaching me all these sayings.
Essentially "stunting for the instagram" involves buying expensive goods or holidays that you can't afford in order to impress others.
It is thriving in the youth of today and is a real problem.
To me these common worldly things are exactly what they are.
There's nothing individualistic about it.
So how are Christians different from this?
Simply put it is the relationship that we have with God.
From my own personal experience, having a deeper relationship with God has allowed me to:
a. Realise I'm actually not that important and possess humility.
b. Stop doing things to please others.
c. Care less what people feel about me and more about what God thinks about me.
When you care more about what God wants you to do your individuality will shine for others to see.
After all you are the light of Christ, made in His image for others to see.
How often have you heard:
"I'm so glad X invited me to church. I came because I saw something different in her she was so joyful/happy/content/strong."
I know the reason I came back to Church was because of the crazy yet beautiful personality that my mother has. (Love you mama.)
Amongst several other things, having a deeper relationship with God expresses the true qualities and traits that He has put in us.
Thus expressing our true individuality.
In the previous worldly examples the people lived to please others and to fit in.
But in gaining a deeper relationship with God you live to please Him.
And in doing so you will become your true self as He designed you to be.
2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
One of my favourite sayings is:
Why struggle to fit in. When you were born to stand out.
Romans 12:2 and this saying helped to birth our motto:
Born to spread the message.
Created to show the light.
What was our aim with the design?
As is the case with a lot of our designs, the goal is always to spread the message of Christ to the masses. And to act as the first point of contact of faith for a non-believer.
The Religion|Relationship design does this perfectly.
The design breeds curiosity.
Are we saying no to religion? Are we saying no to Christianity?
In any case it'll get people talking to the owner of the t-shirt/hoodie giving them a chance to open up about their faith.
And why they believe in a relationship with Jesus Christ over any idea of a religion.
So that concludes today's blog!
As many of you guys may be aware, we celebrated our 1 year anniversary on September 1st.
I'd like to take this time to thank you for your amazing support over the last year.
We're so excited to continue to create meaningful clothing for the Glory of God.
So please continue to support us across all of our channels!
We've just announced a Kids range to be released in the next few weeks.
Our first few posts are to be up in the next few days so be sure to follow down below!
@hoseakids - https://www.instagram.com/hoseakids/
Thank you. God Bless.
And keep working to remove the stigma of religion in Christianity!!
A relationship with God first. :)