1 Peter 5:2-3
“…not greedy for money, but eager to serve; ;
Just saw an interesting title for a Blog Entry: “Fleecing the Flock for Fun and Profit.” It was a tongue and cheek look at methods that some pastors and televangelists use to extract the niave from their hard earned cash. When we look at our sheep, do we see them as people with real needs to care for… or as dollar signs? It is so subtle to shift from helper to helping ourselves.
I love the words of a blogger I recently came across, Matt Rose: “I work in Christian retail; I’ve been around quite a few Christian leaders; and I also do a lot of study on my own time. Here’s what I’ve learned: No one has to beg in order for God’s will to be done. Period.
In Christian retail, there is the “plus sell opportunity,” where the cashier (following secular business models) offers additional products at the register in order to boost sales. As I said, this is my job. But that doesn’t make it easy for me.
Here’s a little irony: the point of Christian customer service, as best I understand it, is to serve the customer. In fact, that should be the point of all customer service, Christian or otherwise. But as soon as you make the switch from focusing on the needs of the customer to focusing on the percent of transactions that result in a plus-sell, you turn people into objects–mere means to your end. And what is your end? Money. Higher sales. Higher profit. Money. Mammon, they used to call it.”
I totally understand and agree with Matt’s words. I used to sell jewelry in a JCP. We were required to keep a certain percentage of “care plan” sales. For some items, like diamond rings, this was easier. But sometimes it did not advantage the customer. At that point I was no longer “serving” the customer… but fleecing them!
If you are in charge of God’s flock in your church ask yourself… and ask yourself often… what’s your motivation?