It is so great when He gives us the encouragement we need through another's prayer and obedient actions to love. So allow me to share with you a little January 1st tale from the Anderson home...
Since being let go in mid-December, Chuck and I had decided to return a few items that we had purchased earlier from Zappos.com. Zappos kindly received our returns and timely refunded monies from two orders that amounted to $212.79. However, rather than returning that money back onto our credit card, they issued a store credit - which we didn't want. Upon realizing this, on December 31st I wrote a quick email to Zappos customer service requesting the following:
"Hi Zappos Peeps. I currently have a $212.79 store credit that I really just want refunded to my originating credit card. Could you please do so? Thanks. ~Victoria"
Within hours, I received an email back from a Zappos representative named Duff who replied:
"Hello Victoria! My name is Duff, and I am with the Zappos Customer Loyalty Team. It will be my sincere pleasure to help out one of our VIP customers on this lovely Winter day! I can absolutely refund that store credit back to you, Victoria, I'll just need a moment to change into an outfit more suited for this mission, if you'll just give me moment. *Hits a button on the desk, a pole is revealed from behind a bookshelf that has slid open. I slide down the pole, and few moments later burst into the room from behind a grandfather clock, huffing and puffing.* Phew... more stairs than I remember...*wheeze*... I have returned as Batduff, using the pain from my past to fuel my hunt for bad customer service in the present! After some investigation, and a harrowing battle with a deranged clown, I have issued your $212.79 back to the orders it originated from. The refund was split across orders #****** and #*******, $111.50 and $101.29 respectively. Both orders were payed with the same Discover card, please keep in mind, it can take up to 2-10 business days for the refund to be reflected in your account depending on your financial institution.
Have an amazing New Year, Victoria! I hope you have an amazing rest of your week, and a great Winter! If you have any questions or need more help please don't hesitate to contact us again, we are here 24/7 and always willing to don our favorite super hero costumes to try and save the day.
Your comic book loving Zapponian,
(You gotta love that Zappos sense of humor! Hahaha!)
Anyway, you'll note that I underlined and highlighted the words "Discover card" above. Because herein emerged a bigger problem... Chuck and I don't own a Discover card - never have and never plan to. YIKES! Where was our $212.79 being refunded to now? I immediately wrote back that same question to Duff.
Then I received another Zappos email:
"Greetings and Salutations, Victoria! Thank you for contacting the Zappos Customer Loyalty Team, my name is Shea and I'll be your driver today on the Zappos happiness bus, yes, it's real! Please have a seat in our special VIP section and remember: Keep your arms and legs inside the vehicle at all times and hold on tight, my driving skills are questionable, while I deliver you some happiness.
We apologize for any inconvenience that it may cause, but unfortunately, we can only refund the credit card originally used on the order. If you still have an account with the issuer/bank, they will transfer the funds to your new account/card. If you have closed your account, please contact your card provider for additional information regarding your refund.
If there's anything else we can assist you with or if this happiness bus completely missed your stop, please don't hesitate to get a hold of us! We're available 24/7 by phone on the VIP line at 1-877-927-2332, Live Chat on Zappos.com, or via email by either responding to this email or sending a message to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Have an amazing morning, you know what..Go ahead and make your whole day amazing!
Your friendly Zapponian,
Wait... was that clear, Shea K? Is Zappos sending my refund back to my original credit card or some strange Discover card number that they think is mine??? (Lord, help resolve this matter!!!)
I received the second email very early on New Years morn (like 2:00 am). So, I resolved to call Zappos Customer Service during regular business hours and speak to someone live about the Discover card confusion. And here is where my story REALLY begins...
After playing the required directional tones on my phone to get to the right department, Crystal answered. She was new to Zappos, and very friendly and helpful. But upon investigating the Discover card question, she found herself at a loss and had to put me on hold to check with their crediting department folks. Happily, when she returned, she confirmed that my $212.79 would be refunded to the actual credit card I originally paid with. YAY, Crystal! Mission successfully accomplished. (Thank you, Lord!)
Then the most interesting thing happened. You see, earlier in our conversation, I had ever so briefly commented that the reason I returned these items was simply due to Chuck's job loss since our finances are now very, very tight. I also mentioned that we were trusting the Lord to provide for us - taking each day as it came. So, before hanging up the call and merely wishing me well, Crystal kindly began to assure me of God's great provision and care. She offered up a little bit about herself - a student who went to Bible college, a Christian, and a new employee with Zappos. She asked if she could pray for me and my family, and then did so immediately when I accepted her invitation. And then, she shared what she referred to as some Hebraic biblical numerology meanings that she had studied in school concerning the number 14 (considering our New Year is in the year 2014). She said that with it being a multiple of 7, 14 partakes of its importance and, being double that number, implies a double measure of spiritual perfection. She then began to share the following which I later looked up online also: The number 14 represents deliverance and salvation and is used twenty-two times in the Bible. The term "14th" is found 24 times in scriptures. In fact, the fourteenth day of the first month is the Passover, when God delivered the firstborn of Israel from death. Some 430 years earlier, on the night of the 14th day of the first month, God made two covenant promises to Abraham - one of the physical seed, Isaac, and his descendants, and one of the spiritual seed, Jesus Christ.
Long story short, according to Crystal, 2014 would be a year of deliverance and salvation from God.
Now, I don't know about you, but for me, that was a lot of information to take in. And since I am no expert concerning biblical numerology and it's would-be importance, I am not equipped to confirm or deny that the information Crystal shared with me even jives with God's ultimate, authoritative Word. That said, I do know this... whether or not biblical numbers really have any significance to teach a spiritual truth is not my first concern. For God does not call us to search for secret meanings, hidden messages, and codes in the Bible because, simply, there is more than enough truth in His Word to already meet ALL our needs... making us “complete and thoroughly equipped for every good work.”
All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works. (2 Timothy 3:16-17)
Anyway, all things considered, I was definitely blessed by Crystal's enthusiastic and obedient heart to not only share her faith in God's salvation, but to encourage me to keep my eyes focused on Jesus' provision and love! Furthermore, she didn't hesitate to invited me to look into a particular Christian Women's Conference if I was able, and recommended I visit a nearby church she knew of in Houston. What a love, right?
I gave Crystal my email and DW's webpage, and told her to always feel free to contact me if she needed prayer or simply someone to talk to... and I thanked her for her open, loving heart to boldly share Jesus. (So, if you are reading this now... HI CRYSTAL! Love, love, love to you in Christ, sweetie!!!)
As I wrap up this little story showcasing a small part of my January 1st, 2014... I thought it important to share this lesson with you, DW's: God calls each of us to daily "discover" Him. Then, He commands us to feed His sheep and "return" Christ's message of salvation to those we encounter each and every day. We are to enthusiastically promote discipleship and service within His church while offering the glorious hope of the Savior to those who remain lost and outside His fold. Speaking truthfully and loving one another without reservation, we must obediently take the time to give of ourselves whenever the Spirit calls us to do so... whether it be on a Zappos Customer Service Call, standing in line at Starbucks, or sitting on a park bench. For really, the place nor time is not nearly as important as the people God brings before us to minister to. Yes, Jesus wants us to share His eternal message of deliverance and salvation to all the world. He wants us to love and give as He has loved and given to us. So today, I encourage you to do so! Go into all the world and preach His GOOD NEWS, Believers... for the world thirsts for His perfect, timely love!
As cold waters to a thirsty soul, so is good news from a far country. (Proverbs 25:25)
And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. (Mark 16:15)
As January 2nd begins... let's discover and return the crystal clear love of Jesus to a world in great need of our eternal, Almighty King!
P.S. Below is a list of Zappos.com Family Core Values. I encourage you to add onto the beginning of each of these values the words "In Christ" and then follow-through!!! God is soooo wonderful!!! XOXO! ~V
- (In Christ) Deliver WOW Through Service
- (In Christ) Embrace and Drive Change
- (In Christ) Create Fun and A Little Weirdness
- (In Christ) Be Adventurous, Creative, and Open-Minded
- (In Christ) Pursue Growth and Learning
- (In Christ) Build Open and Honest Relationships With Communication
- (In Christ) Build a Positive Team and Family Spirit
- (In Christ) Do More With Less
- (In Christ) Be Passionate and Determined
- (In Christ) Be Humble