We had an experience with Amazon yesterday. An item for one of our grandchildren. Bulky to deliver and bulky to keep in the house. But useful. Something that chills-out Alfie when he is unable to express frustration on a dial from 1-10 as we do. Alfie just has 10. And Alfie “chills out” by bouncing – and with more spatial awareness than I have – enough to watch a tv programme and still not fall off the thing! Special needs are special deeds.
Anyway, Amazon speedily delivered this item bought “Used – as good as new”. Except it was “Used – not fit for purpose.” A huge tear in the edging cover. Feet unable to be screwed on to the base. And bulky.
Amazon make telephone contact difficult.
Their website has it well hidden away (somewhere) so I googled to find their number. Their returns process has a contact number for the supplier – but in this case they washed their hands of it: “Not our problem – it’s Amazon.” And Amazon required me to take this bulky item to one of their nominated collection points. Getting the item to me needs speedy delivery – but sending back a not-fit-for-purpose-speedily-delivered-item does not.
That’s customer service (allegedly).
The Amazon Customer Representative (somewhere in the world) was very understanding and very helpful. Except for the computer not allowing any collection in this case. And the computer was the final arbiter. We agreed that her authority level precluded overriding “the computer”, so please could I speak to a manager who did have that authority. And – despite having no authority to override the computer (programmed to some human’s instruction) – she did have “the authority” to tell me that no one else would disagree with her. And when I pointed out that ambiguity she simply repeated it. Several times. And when I insisted that I would like to find that out for myself, she told she would “try and reach out” (I hate that phrase) to a manager.
And after a while and an extended conversation with a Customer Service Team Manager – the same ambiguity: no had the authority to override the computer – but all had the authority to tell me that NO ONE would or could. (i.e. in the entire organisation and hierarchy of Amazon Global). Conclusion …
Despite being told I would be called later that day – all I got was a standard email refunding the purchase. And the reason? Because “the item was not delivered”!
Problem … what problem?
Customer service – what customer service?
So to the bible bit …
Seems to me that we use the bible the same way.
We don’t have the authority to overrule the bible. No one in the organisation or hierarchy has. But we do HAVE the authority to enforce the bible (on behalf of God).
And – just like yesterday – that ambiguity never seems to be questioned by “the organisation” of the church.
And – just like yesterday – God is never available there and then to override His own bible.
And – just like yesterday – we always assume the authority of God: the authority to say that God would NEVER override HIS bible anyway.
I read the bible.
The “You have seen it written but I say … “ conversations. The “greatest of these is … “ discourses. God overrides our interpretation of “His bible” (as it wasn’t back then) time and time again.
Because WE decided then (and still now) that LOVE costs US too much. And Head Office endorse that and teach it and preach it. And we believe it – just like Amazon. We believe no one can or would override the bible – not even God!
Just like Amazon believed no one would override the computer.
And – just like Amazon – finding out if that is true or not COSTS all of us something.
And that is why LOVE costs.
And that is why WE prefer the Law.
And that is why WE speak for God (and the CEO of Amazon).
And that is why we never question that ambiguity.
As soon as we do – it starts costing us.
It’s easier to change a bit of internal paperwork saying that the (not fit for purpose) item (sent out as perfect) was never even delivered (so never needed to be collected or not). We all have that “authority” within the Law. Within the Law of the bible.
But would God really say that was how we are to do things?
Would the CEO of Amazon agree that was how to do “customer service”?