Quote of the Week
Regard for the Weak


I once saw this lady preacher on TV speaking about favor. I remember her show because she produced it in the style of an infomercial. It was weird. She just kept trying to sell her message, which was that we have favor from God. According to her this favor would basically allow us to walk all over people to get whatever we wanted.

She was teaching that the favor of God would bring you good parking spaces at the grocery store. This favor would force your boss to give you a raise, and so on. It is hard for me to understand how people fall for that stuff. Favor is easy to obtain.

If you want to get good service be nice to the people giving you the service. For example people send us care packages here in Kenya. They do this because they love us and want to bless us with things from home. When you ship a package to us here in Kenya it first has to go through customs. I have to wait for these officers to come to the post office to check out the package, which means that sometimes I am waiting at the post office a good amount of time. This gives me a chance to either be grumpy and complain to the employees there, who have no control over the customs agents, or I could be friendly and concerned with their lives. I have seen other missionaries really complain and gripe about the delays, and consequently they are delayed even more. Here is a little secret that I learned from working for the government; civil servants do not care about customer service. Complaining about delays will only produce more delays.

Eventually the customs officer comes by the post office, and in my presence, opens the parcel. He/she does this to see what is inside and assess a tax. I have gone out of my way to be nice and make friends with these people. I'm not talking about bribing, I am just friendly and polite.

Because of my friendliness they often wave the taxes for us, and when they have to charge they place the lowest possible value on the items. This is not because of some mysterious supernatural favor from God, but because I read somewhere in the Bible that a friendly person has friends, and that we should live at peace with the government.

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