Let another praise you, and not your own mouth; someone else, and not your own lips
~ Proverbs 27:2
My many years of owning and operating an ad agency taught me that "positioning" was defined as a place or position that a product, service, or person held in the mind of the audience. We knew that often perception was reality for people, regardless of what the truth was. For years I spent time and money seeking to position our company in the minds of our prospective clients. Although it would seem that is a natural and logical marketing function, I later discovered there is a dangerous flaw when we attempt to position ourselves by promoting our own attributes. I discovered that positioning is a byproduct of who we are and what we do, not an end in itself.
David was my first biblical lesson in coming to understand the difference. Here was a man who had committed adultery, murder, and failed many times in his family life. Yet, God Himself describes David as a "man after God's own heart." Isn't that interesting? Why would God describe someone who had obviously failed in many areas as one who was after God's own heart?
Throughout the life of David, we find these frequent descriptions made by God: "And the fame of David spread throughout the land." "And God made David famous among the people." Although David did make many mistakes, David had a heart that was soft toward God and sought to praise God.
He wrote the majority of the Psalms. It was what was in David's heart that God honored, not his perfection. I believe that God's strategic placement of David "for such a time as this," was so that we may learn from and be drawn to the attribute of David that God primarily wanted him known for: a heart bent toward Him. His "positioning" was a byproduct of who he was, not an end in itself.
In our business and personal life, our positioning among those who will know us should be a byproduct of our life and service, not an end itself.
What is your "position" today among your peers? I asked my Bible study group one time to ask others what they think of when your name is mentioned. This exercise might bring some interesting revelations. It might motivate you to make some changes, or it might confirm that God is doing a great work in you.
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