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FIRST-PERSON: Personalized service key to developing lifelong customer

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (BP)–The television commercial displayed a beautifully decorated room with numerous amenities. The housekeeper exchanged a blue robe for the white one on the bathroom door. She removed a gorgeous bedspread and replaced it with one of leopard skin design. A framed gold record replaced the picture over the bed. The final touch — a teddy bear placed gently on the bed as she turned to leave.

As the announcer issues the invitation to experience “home away from home,” the scene shifts to the hotel’s front desk. Only the arm of the arriving guest is seen as he picks up his key. The pieces of the commercial all come together as you recognize the familiar voice saying, “Thank you, thank you very much.” The hotel knew the personal desires of Elvis Presley, and they adjusted their service to meet his needs.

Can you recall an experience where you received this kind of personalized treatment? How did it make you feel? Statistics reveal when people feel understood and their needs are met, they become a customer for life.

In recent months, Woman’s Missionary Union has focused a great deal of attention getting better acquainted with missions leaders in the local church. Our desire is to provide the highest quality missions resources and service. Leaders have shared their opinions with us by telephone, through surveys, over e-mail and in focus groups. As a result, the national WMU staff has heard several things.

Some leaders told us that their churches have a growing number of members lacking a missions foundation. Some did not grow up Baptist; others came to faith as adults. To help those churches disciple this new generation in missions, WMU will provide renewed focus on the biblical foundation for missions over the next two years through a variety of means.

Bob Sjogren’s multimedia presentation titled, “Unveiled: God’s Heart for His People,” presents biblical missions principles from Genesis to Revelation. This fast-paced eight-part video series can be a beginning point for capturing the attention of a new generation of Baptists.

A second resource, titled “From Creation to Eternity,” will be released later this year. Written by WMU consultant Sheryl Churchill, this biblical study of missions will be appropriate for individuals as well as group study.

Other resources will follow to assist leaders in helping their churches understand God’s heart for the nations of the world.

We also learned that a growing number of churches are moving to coed missions. For several years WMU has provided Missions MatchFile for children and a Youth on Mission plan book. We are planning a review and more focused direction on new ways to resource this growing need in churches.

These are just two of the needs surfaced. WMU is committed to providing the top-quality missions resources our customers have come to expect. While we may not be able to provide a leopard skin bedspread and a framed gold record, we do promise our best efforts to help churches discover the joy of missions as we fulfill God’s plans for his people.
Lee is WMU’s executive director.

    About the Author

  • Wanda S. Lee