Dill Pickles and Dr Pepper?

I have often written about the impact of ideation on one of my favorite beverages – Dr Pepper! It wasn’t too long ago that I was snookered into buying Dr Pepper: Dark Berry Zero Sugar! I hated it and couldn’t give it away! This new attempt at ideation is another one I will be quickly sending off to the idea-garbage heap! This latest one was inspired by a TikTok campaign aided by the likes of Sonic Drive-In’s who are adding dill pickles to the sacred Dr Pepper formula! This is just wrong! What is this world coming to??

Static Media: shutterstock.getty.com

The slogan “new and improved” may be the motto for product ideation, but I vigorously resist any attempts to cater to a sour-pickle-cult-following of social media “noodle heads” who want to mess with my Dr Pepper! Surely there are better ways to generate new ideas and at the same time protect the integrity of a product without going crazy!

Now, I have no problem with ideation when it comes to Blue Bell Ice Cream choosing to add a new flavor like A&W Root Beer Float to its delicious line of products. Why, even St. Louis has its own flavor after the Brennan, Texas creamery recently nodded to the Gateway City and added Gooey Butter Cake to its multitudinous list of enhanced flavors! In my opinion, that was a good decision! Many of us from small towns in America have cherished memories during humid summer evenings of holding a footlong hotdog in one hand and a cold mug of A&W in another!


Bert Lance, budget director under President Jimmy Carter, has been credited with the saying, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!” Many of us have lived by the conventional wisdom that there is no reason to change something that’s working well! But years ago, another generation of ideators challenged the status quo with this audacious statement, “If it ain’t broke, break it anyway!”

Soon, traditional values, sacred to many who hold a Christian worldview, were thrown out the cultural window. And the Bible began to be regarded as just another old book tucked away on a dusty shelf. In the eyes of many, the Word of and from God has lost its authority and relevance. The new guide for living seems to reside in everyone’s own ideas about what is right and relevant!

Our church pastors are launching a new summer series of messages entitled, Romans Remixed! The term “remixed” is often used in the music industry when technology is used to improve the quality of an existing musical recording. I think this clever series title should have many of us sitting on the edge of our seats during worship to hear how this ancient theological treatise, called the Book of Romans, is going to speak into our lives today a relevant message about life, direction, and hope.

This Sunday, I will be helping to launch an introductory message to our new series. The following is an excerpt from the message, entitled, “The Power of the Gospel” from Romans 1:1-17. In three verses, the Apostle Paul summarizes, “For I have a great sense of obligation to people… So I am eager to come to you in Rome, too, to preach the Good News. For I am not ashamed of this Good News about Christ. It is the power of God at work, saving everyone who believes.” (Ro. 1:14-16, NLT).

“Finally, Paul is confident because of the superiority of the true gospel to any other belief system in this world. Sometimes, I think we depreciate our gospel experience because we do not share such confidence that it will hold its own and even exceed the other ideas in the world’s marketplace of ideologies, philosophies, and religions. It will hold up! Every time!

“Paul literally spent much of his time seated in the marketplace with seekers and those far from God. While he used his tent making skills, he was in conversation with these individuals about their need for Christ. I know he never for a minute thought that the gospel he embraced and shared was not the superior message in that marketplace of various ideas and belief systems. You won’t see the apostle Paul ashamed, embarrassed, or apologizing or making excuses about the gospel. On the contrary, he had great confidence in the gospel and knew how much others needed its life changing message!

“I wonder if we need to spend more time in the coffee shops, grocery stores, and other gathering places in the marketplaces of our lives. We need to be engaging others and sharing with them the gospel that has transformed our lives. We need to pray more, share more and be more confident in what we’ve got here!”

Indeed, it is my hope and prayer that you will be in a place of worship this Lord’s Day! May God bless you as you gather with others on the journey of faith!

Links: Sacred Formula  County Store Cooler  Sweet Sassy Beans

Mike Keppler, retired pastor,

active churchman and
doting grandparent.
Contact: drmjkeppler@gmail.com








  1. I doubt Paul ever knew how many lives he changed throughout these many years. God bless you and your family

    1. Thank you! We carry on Paul's mission for Christ to our generation! What a blessing!


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