Here’s something that you will amaze you. The following are actual complaints received by Thomas Cook Vacations from some of their customers.
“When we were in Spain, there were too many Spanish people there. The receptionist spoke Spanish, the food was Spanish. No one told us there would be so many foreigners.” “The beach was too sandy. We had to clean everything when we returned to our room.”
“It’s lazy of the local shopkeepers in Puerto Vallarta to close in the afternoons. I often needed to buy things during siesta time. This should be banned.” “No one told us there would be fish in the water. The children were scared.” “I was bitten by a mosquito. The brochure did not mention mosquitoes.” “It is your duty as a tour operator to advise us of noisy or unruly guests before we travel.”
“It took us nine hours to fly from Jamaica to England. It took the Americans only three hours to get home. This seems unfair.” “I compared the size of our one-bedroom suite to our friend’s three room bedroom suite and ours was significantly smaller.” “My fiancée and I requested twin beds when we booked, but instead we were placed in a room with a king bed. We hold you responsible and want to be reimbursed for the fact that I became pregnant. This would not have happened if you had put us in the room that we booked.”
You might be thinking, “These people walk among us and they vote.”
Did you notice all the pronouns in these complaints? The complaints had wording like I was disgusted, no one told us, we had to wait, it’s your duty, I was bitten, our room was significantly smaller than, we hold you responsible, we want reimbursement, we had to fly longer and that’s unfair.” The pronouns gravitate around ‘me, myself, and I.’
What is going on here? Are these people crazy or completely self-absorbed? No, I would say many of these people are great people. Most people are!
Many of these people have a modern day phenomenon of what I call, ‘All Focus – Very Limited Awareness.’ Intentionally or unintentionally, ‘their’ world becomes ‘the’ world. They expect everyone else to conform to their world while ignoring everyone else’s world. While they would say they are aware, they are only aware of what is relevant to them and their not aware of it.
Let’s explore focus and awareness. Focus is simply doing those things that need to be done now, and doing them correctly. Awareness is a broader focus, if you will, on those things that might affect what we are trying to do. Living real life requires both. If you are going to India and don’t like curry, you had better be aware of it.
Here’s an example of all focus and very limited awareness in real life. In the Korean War, General Douglas MacArthur had just completed the destruction of the North Korean army in one of the most brilliant campaigns in American military history. His focus was winning the war in Korea and he had done that.
He neglected, however, to consider that two hundred thousand Chinese were just across the Yalu River and that the Chinese were taking serious exception to his focused plan. He knew they were there but he either was not or refused to be aware that they might jump him. Well, they jumped him, and MacArthur and the rest of the United States forces in Korea had a very nasty time for the next few months because of his lack of awareness.
Jesus came to bring us awareness of the reality of God, the spiritual realm, heaven, and how to enter God’s kingdom. And that’s something that us ‘All Focus…Very Limited Awareness’ people could use some awareness of.
Church-Community Connection is published weekly in 10 newspapers all over the world. Most of these newspapers are local paid subscription newspapers. The goal of these 450 word articles is to build a bridge to the community through humor, wisdom and changing mental perceptions that the community has of the church.