So Julie's birthday was last week. June 28th, to be exact.
On Thursday, June 25, I came up with a brainstorm on a series of great gifts for her. I was down a break point in the final set, but I felt like I had come through with a winner. Just in time.
So I ordered the gifts online. And I paid -- dearly -- for next day delivery. That gets the gifts there by the 26th, right? The 27th at the latest? Either way, I'm good for the 28th.
Not so much.
When it got to June 28th, I had to put a note in an envelope telling Julie what was coming the next day. Fortunately, I had some other good gifts on hand to compensate for those that were delayed.
So the gifts arrived on Monday, June 29 -- fully four days after I placed the order. I called the company for an explanation and, more urgently, for a refund of the "next day delivery" fee.
Good luck with that.
The very nice representative on the other end of the line told me that a Monday delivery was in fact "on time" for a "Next Day Delivery Service."
I asked in reply, "How does delivery on the 29th count as next day for an order placed on the 25th?"
The answer had to do with the day that the order actually got processed, plus the fact that Saturdays and Sundays don't really count as "days."
"But Sunday counted as my wife's birthday!"
All to no avail.
Words count. Promises matter. Whether it's delivering packages or leading ministry.
It all reminded me to be cautious about my promises and clear in my communication.
And not to hide behind the small print when I fail.