Recently, my husband wrote to Zappos asking them if it was at all possible for him to return a pair of shoes that, over time, he realized he didn’t like.
See he had ordered many pairs of sneakers, wore them around the house for a few hours before deciding on one pair and sending the rest back. He then brought this pair on our summer vacation to San Francisco and Yosemite…and that’s when it happened. He started to feel a digging in the side of his foot and no longer liked the shoes. After vacation, he didn’t really wear them and returned to Zappos to find another pair. Six months later he wrote to Zappos and asked if he could return them.
They said yes…with a 100% refund!
You think he would be excited…but he wasn’t. His brow was furrowed and you could tell he was deep in thought.
Now my brow furrowed. I asked, “Aren’t you happy?” And he said, “But I wore them, I was maybe thinking of a 50% credit or something. I just don’t understand. How are they making a profit?”
He was basically saying, “This seems unfair” and he’s right. It is.
It is similar to how some other companies interact with their customers, having this attitude of support, help, and encouragement 24/7. Customers can receive a 100% refund when they are disappointed with IT services, discussion post writing services, and many other offline and online services.
That’s the thing about gifts. The Oxford Dictionary defines a gift as “(noun) a thing given willingly to someone without payment; a present”.
Gifts are given without any benefit to the giver.
But is that how we give gifts?
Think about Christmas. How many of those gifts felt like an obligation versus a desire, a true desire to give something to someone without expecting anything in return?
So is it any wonder that my husband struggles with the concept of accepting an over-the-top refund from Zappos?
And is it any wonder that we struggle to accept God’s gift? And if we cannot accept this gift ourselves, how do we explain it to everyone else?