The (sigh) electronic age is both wonderful and potentially miserable. We love airplanes and travel, but when one goes down…! Electronic payment systems are wonderful, but when there is a glitch, it is so painful! In the last month we have seen the card processor giant Vantiv (which serves our Fiserv clients) push some untested code which debited credit and debit cards for 10X their normal gift amounts. Even though the mistake was caught quickly and reversed by the next day, this technical error still left a painful trial and trail for our ministry leaders’ giver relationships. Our staff dies a thousand deaths here when the machine breaks. We hear about the checking account frozen and EFT payments not made on time… with penalties. But grace… Those of us between the “back end” and the client move fast to help and remedy. But the pain still hurts.
I believe there is more to come. Not just Vantiv last month but Walmart on August 19 re-debited all online purchases for July 29 and 30. Thousands were billed, and cards were frozen in what looked like attempted fraud. Ask me how I know about this one? Yes, I purchased two laptops July 29. But it did not end there. Amazon was shut down for a few hours on the 19th, and Goldman Sachs pushed some bad code and caused stocks to be sold by millions. It will cost them hundreds of millions of dollars to remedy the slip. Then today, on the front page of the Wall Street Journal, “Nasdaq in Fresh Market Failure.” Bad code caused the market to shut down on August 22nd for over 3 hours causing untold grief.
We live in this age, and there is no place to hide. Some of us old Boomers imagine some non-electronic place to spend our last years. But not in this country, though maybe in the 3rd World. Yuk! So I am sending this out to help you “steel yourselves” a little better, and to not be so shocked the next time your previously perfect world hiccups. And prepare your words of comfort and understanding for your givers as you remedy whatever happened.
We love helping the Lord grow His Kingdom through you, and we hold your giver relationships in the utmost esteem. We work hard for perfection at all times… painfully, lest we cause anyone to stumble. Yet the rain falls on the just too….