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Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Fake Jordans, Real Life

"You're Selling out your birthright/And that's senseless like trading in a motorcycle for a dirt bike. I'm mean the earth's aiight, but turn on the search light. You'll see. It's not a new pair of Jordans. It's some hurt Nikes. - Da T.R.U.T.H.

My little brother and I are almost 20 years apart in age, so we grew up quite differently. When he goes shopping with mom, he comes out with Jordans. 

Back in the day, when I went shopping with mom, I came home with these. Yes, those are Hakeem "The Dream" Olajuwon's signature Etonics.

And when I was growing up, it was easy to spot a fake pair of 
Jordans. What made telling the real from the fake so  easy was that companies never tried to pass fake Jordans off as real Jordans. Companies did much like FUBU does now, stealing the entire design but never passing their imitation shoes off as the real thing. The Stadias pictured below, for instance, were one company that copied Jordans. 

However, as Jordans continue to soar in popularity, so does the counterfeiting of the popular sneaker. And now impostors make the imitation so close to the original that it's becoming more and more difficult to tell the fake from the real.  Watch this 6-minute video below to examine just how close the imitation is to the original.  (Caution: the video maker uses a few crude words to describe subtle differences in the shoes).

Here's the point. I volunteer in a high school campus ministry called Young Life at Robert E. Lee High School in Staunton. At that school, I work with a group of students who could all teach a class on distinguishing between real and fake Js.  In their world, inauthentic Jordans are completely unacceptable.

But what about real life? If something like tennis shoes deserves this much scrutiny to authenticate realness, how much scrutiny does the question "What is the meaning of life?" deserve? 

There's a way to live life that is just like a pair of fake Jordans. That way is to try to make something other than God - stuff like sports, music, money, sex, fashion, ourselves - the ultimate thing in which we find fulfillment. That's like trying to make a pair of fake Jordans a pair of  real Jordans. At the end of the day, they will always be fake Js.

Then there's an alternative.

God allows you to turn into your fake-Jordan life for a real life. According to God, real life is entering right relationship with Him. Although you, me and every other human had been separated from God through our sin and independence, Jesus Christ lived and died in our place in order that we can enter back into a dependent relationship with God. It's the life we were made to live. 

So what will you choose? The fake or the real? 

I write these blogs as conversation starters. I would love to know:

  • What is your all-time favorite sneaker?
  • What is the funniest thing your mom ever bought you to wear?
  • What's something you took away from this blog?
Chris Lassiter is a Christ-follower, a husband to Emily (read her blogs here), and father of five wonderful and crazy kids. He has written for The News Leader,,, Young Life Relationships and other publications. Moody Publications recently released his first book, You're Grounded, which you can read about here. The Cross Promotion Blog gets updated twice a week, so please consider following by signing up through e-mail or following by clicking 'Join This Site' at the bottom of the page.

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