If anyone has caused grief, he has not so much grieved me as he has grieved all of you, to some extent—not to put it too severely. (2 Cor. 2:5)

WHEN I WAS A CHILD, my parents gave the same speech on the first day of every school year. It began with the standard lines: be good, work hard, mind your teachers, and pay attention. It concluded with a gentle reminder: “Remember, you’re a Wilson. Live up to your name!”

I was less than enthusiastic about that speech as a child, but I found myself giving it to my own kids as I packed them off to school each fall. Being part of a family, or any community, means that your actions have the power to bless or harm many others. It’s not all about you.

This is Paul’s word to the Corinthian church. The behavior of one affects all. We are not lone rangers, responsible only to God. We are a community of believers, responsible also to one another. When one of us upholds the name of Christ, it brings honor to Him and advances the gospel. However, when one of us fails to live in a manner worthy of our calling, it is an affront not only to Christ, but also to the members of His body.

So be good, work hard, pay attention, and remember you are a Christian. Everything you do reflects on our family’s reputation. Live up to your name!

Imagine yourself wearing a nametag today that reads, “My name is Christian.”

Lawrence W. Wilson is an author, thinker, and believer in the power of God. He is the author of A Different Kind of Crazy (WPH) and co-author of The Long Road Home (WPH).