We desire to awaken culture through truth
Mission. It’s not something we do, it’s who we are. As people, as a company, as a church. Paradigm seeks to be in the heart of culture and to awaken it. We are a lifestyle brand, but not in the usual sense. On the one hand, yes we create designs that fit your lifestyle. We’ll be the first to admit, we love to be trendy -- we love to be in the heart of the people. We want to create clothing you’ll be stoked to wear -- not just on retreat -- but out on the streets. On the other hand, we hope our brand challenges your lifestyle and that of those around you. So, we make designs that spark creative conversation that leads to an evangelization opportunity and we provide digital content that equips you to go out and live mission.
IT ALL STARTED WHEN...
The heart of Paradigm began years before the company did. Back when our Founder, Jamie Cleaton, was in high school, he felt a deep disparity in his heart when it came to evangelizing. The Great Commission calls each one of to make disciples of all nations. It SOUNDS mighty and adventurous, but in today’s climate -- it can often lead to people feeling pressured, uncomfortable, and even put off. Noticing that in order for a conversation to really take root in the heart of the person he was evangelizing to, Jamie realized the conversation needed to happen organically. Thus the idea of using apparel as an opportunity to evangelize was born. He created a shirt after coming off retreat in high school that simply read, “This I know.” And as he and his friends began to wear it, people started asking them the obvious question: “What do you know?” And in that moment, genuine conversation was born. “Oh I know that Jesus loves me and He loves you too.”
Allowing others to approach them about the hidden truth on their shirts created a moment that had been long missing -- the moment where the typical evangelization conversation was flipped on its head and truth was more likely to be received.
Fast forward five years, and Paradigm was founded. It started with a t-shirt, but now it’s so much more than that. Our deepest mission is not to create trendy designs, it's to awaken you and set YOU on mission.
As a church, our deepest identity IS mission. Pursuing mission MUST begin with inner transformation. The very first question isn’t “how can we go out and change the world for the sake of the Kingdom?” -- that relies way too heavily on our own strength. Really we should be asking, “How can we open ourselves up more fully to the transformation the Lord wants to move in our hearts so that HE can build the Kingdom more freely through us?” We will never arrive “transformed,” but we can continue to partner with the Lord in a constant state of becoming. As He moves in us, we will be more and more equipped to point everything in our lives towards Him.
SPEAKING OF TRANSFORMATION
The triangle is not just our attempt to be hipsters, rather the symbol holds quite a bit of meaning for a Christian. First of all, it’s Trinitarian in nature -- three points. Second, it stands rooted with two corners on the ground and one pointed directly up, drawing attention automatically up to the heavens and away from itself. As Christians we live on earth, but our lives should point up to something greater. When people see the conviction with which we live, the passion with which we speak, and the love we have in our hearts - their attention should be raised to the heavens. The Lord uses Truth, Beauty, and Goodness to point all things to Himself. When we live as we ought to, people should see God. Third, in the world of science, triangles are a symbol of transformation, a shift, an agent of change. Whenever anyone wears our brand, we want them to know that our design is not the agent of change, THEY are.
So here’s the thing. We’re glad you’re here, but you really need to go. We don’t want you to stay. We want to equip you to go out and establish mission, not rely on Paradigm as your crutch. We aren’t here to take the space of community in your life. Don’t come to us for comfort (you weren’t made for it), come to us to be prepared, equipped, and challenged.
We want this mission-based community to be full circle. Not only are you equipped with an evangelization opportunity, but Paradigm’s digital platforms can be a practical resource for those that are looking for the tangible tools to evangelize. We desire to set people on mission, to create opportunities, and to equip people to be Christ’s hands and feet wherever they’re at.
We want to end by taking it back to the beginning: The Church’s deepest identity. Pope Paul VI said it clearly in his encyclical -- Evangelii Nuntiandi: “Evangelizing is in fact the grace and vocation proper to the Church, her deepest identity. She exists in order to evangelize.” You cannot have Mission without Community, they’re two lungs. Both vital, both breathe life into each other. So go out. Live Mission. Be a part of the Paradigm shift.