Sunday, March 19, 2006

Muchas Gracias

A few weeks ago Gayla, Amor Ministries' Chief Spiritual Officer, shared that our theme for Spring of 2006 was simply "Thank You". It stems from our gratitude for all those who serve with us. Its not surprising then when I was reading a book that Alon, Amor's Director of Development, gave me that shared that major donors should be thanked no less than seven times. The specific number is of no real significance. Its the importance of how we should thank those who share with us in very appropriate and numerous ways.

When I think of all the people over the years who have sacrificially provided support and provided encouragement to Amor and to all of us who serve, I get very humbled. I am reminded of the phrase I often hear on Southwest Airlines by the flight attendants, "We know you have a choice of who you fly with. Thank you for choosing Southwest".

I know the phrase "major donors" is the standard phrase in non profits for those who significantly support our work, but I prefer calling them "major friends". "Donor" sounds almost like "customer" to me. I know we don't consider our supporters customers! We are all amazed that people drive and fly in from all over the country, Australia, Canada, and even Europe to serve along side us. They don't serve us, they serve along side us. We are partners and "friends" in ministry. We couldn't accomplish what God has called us to do with out their support, their prayers, and their friendship.

When I say "friends" I think of a whole slew of people involved in our ministry. I immediately think of our mission trip participants, our Mexican Pastors, and our group leaders. I can't help but think of those who pray for us, who financially support us, who make donations of all kinds for us. I remember those who donate countless hours like our Board of Directors, our committee members, our National Advisory Board, our Nexus participants, our Barnabus volunteers, and our one year long interns. I even recall those we do business with us like our vendors in the US as well as in Mexico.

We want our "major friends" to be life long friends. Not someone that comes on a trip one time and forgets about us. Not someone who sends in a check after reading our newsletter and we thank in a receipt letter and then we forget about. We want "major friends" who share in our work to feel appreciated for their partnership with us, and know they are a "major" part of our ministry. Can you imagine what a difference someone makes in our ministry and our lives when we continue a friendship that lasts for years. Hopefully 20 or 30 years, or more!!

The seven thank you's I mentioned earlier are all about making "friends" not making "customers". We want to share our ministry, our gratitude, and our time with our "major friends". Why a "relationship" you ask? Well, the first thing that comes to mind is, its the right thing. Its why we are called into a relationship with Christ. It why we are called into fellowship in the church.

And its why saying "thank you" is so natural for us. Everyone we come in contact should, to the best of our ability, feel like a "friend" to Amor. So, I end this note with a great big "thank you" for being a part of this amazing ministry which you make so enjoyable and fulfilling to serve at. And.. of course for making this all so outrageously fun!!! Thank you!!!



Anonymous said...

I just read that it takes 21 repetitions to make something a habit, so we should be making "Thank You" a habit pretty quickly!

MikeM said...

Cool Blog, I don't think we can say thank you enough. If it is seven times or seventy times, we should always be grateful for what God is doing and the opportunities that we get to participate in. We should be grateful for "every" person that God puts in our life. Thanks Scotty, for your thoughts. I will try to remember to say thank you more often.