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Monday, June 30, 2014

Big Business for Dummies

Many will remember the beloved Wendy’s commercial from the 1980s when a customer questioned what kind of chicken parts were in another restaurant’s chicken sandwich. The classic response was, “Parts is parts!”

For my 52nd blog — completing one year — I’ve chosen a story about dummies. And their parts. Well, they’re actually mannequins. And their parts.

The very entrepreneurial Judi Henderson-Townsend of Oakland, California, has had a series of good jobs. This woman in her fifties has worked in corporate sales for the likes of Johnson & Johnson, United Airlines, and later for a dot-com company. But one day she noted someone selling mannequins on Craigslist. You can read her very interesting story.

In short, Judi put on her thinking cap and discovered a way to make money from dummies — so to speak. Her company became a broker for those who wanted to dispose of mannequins and their parts, and other firms who wanted to buy them. Unbeknownst to many of us not acquainted with the world of fake humanoids, there is actually a problem of disposing of mannequins. Judi has solved a problem! And is making good money at it!

To build her business to the million dollar club, she has identified three critical goals to build her business: drill down on the numbers. Find another revenue stream. And change the mind-set. Again, I refer you the link of the New York Times pieces for details.

Many centuries ago, the Christ follower known as Paul put on his thinking cap, too. When he wrote a letter to the growing church in Corinth, this is the language he used: “The human body has many parts. The foot might say, ‘Because I am not a hand, I am not part of the body.’ But saying this would not stop the foot from being a part of the body. The ear might say, ‘Because I am not an eye, I am not part of the body.’ But saying this would not stop the ear from being a part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, it would not be able to hear. If the whole body were an ear, it would not be able to smell. If each part of the body were the same part, there would be no body. But truly God put all the parts, each one of them, in the body as he wanted them. So then there are many parts, but only one body.” (I Corinthians 12:14-20 NCV)

It’s a big stretch to say this was “Building Churches for Dummies,” but the Corinthians needed some help. Call it assembly instructions. They’re not alone.

Still today, we get challenged by prophet-like words from groups like Casting Crowns who challenge us with these lyrics:

But if we are the body
Why aren't His arms reaching?
Why aren't His hands healing?
Why aren't His words teaching?
And if we are the body
Why aren't His feet going?
Why is His love not showing them there is a way?

No need for me to add to that sermon. In the Body of Christ, EVERYONE has a purpose. Parts is parts. Beautiful, huh?

That’s The Way WE Work. To connect via Facebook, click the link to the right.

Mark Elfstrand can be heard weekdays, 4-6 pm on AM 1160 WYLL in Chicago. Check the web for WYLL and the app for AM 1160 to listen live. Or by podcast.

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