Saturday, January 22, 2011

How not to be a bank teller

A few months ago, I went to pay rent on V's and my new apartment. I'll call the bank where our landlord's account Bank Q, whereas V and I have accounts at Bank F. (I love picking random letters.)

The teller at Bank Q, when he saw my cash in an envelope from Bank F, proceeded to lecture me on how Bank F wasn't responsible, and in fact, they'd lied to their customers and were unethical. Bank Q, according to him, was much safer, and I would be better off if I immediately switched my bank.

My first thoughts, in order, were:
1) How dare you tell me what to do?
2) Why on earth should I trust you?
3) Thanks a lot for implying that I didn't research or pay any attention when I made my choice.

Today it occurred to me that this comes across much the same as the traditional model of evangelism that I was raised with. Clearly our version of religion was superior, and we needed to share that message with the world, for their own good. I was never a fan of it. But looking at it now, after having my banking choices questioned, I think I would slap someone who told me I was making the wrong decision about my overall life.

That quote, by St. Francis? "Preach the gospel at all times; if necessary, use words." It's over-quoted sometimes. It's never over-practiced.

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