Speaking Up!

In the past year God has really been teaching me how to use my voice in ways I haven't used it before. I have been praying for several years for BOLDNESS in my speech, but it has been a process and not an automatic thing. As He has been guiding me, I see how His wisdom is perfect, as I've had to go through several little steps to build up to a situation I was in today. He has guided me in such a way that I am able to be respectful, but still get my words out to express what needs to be said.

Today I found myself in an odd situation. I had bought 3 "junior" tickets to Oceans of Fun, and took 3 of my favorite little people to the park. I had already taken them, as well as Chase to Oceans of Fun & Worlds of Fun on the "junior" tickets. Now, the tickets said for people 48 inches or less, but when entering the gates all summer (until today) there was never a problem. (All the kids were taller than 48 inches by the way!) Previously, the kids just handed the tickets, they were scanned, and we were in! Today was different.

We got to the park, and one of the kids noticed what her ticket said about the height. I replied by saying, "Yeah, but they don't check height. That's how you guys got into Worlds of Fun earlier this year." So, we were off. We got to the ticket area, and sure enough, they checked her height. Then I was told I had to go pay full price for all three kids. (Junior price was only $10.) I explained that I had done this all summer with kids and I had never had a problem. At this point, one of the young men offered to walk me up to guest relations. I said, "Okay."

When we got there, the situation was explained to the gal, who told me the same thing. Same song, part two. Then another employee was involved. Same song, part three. They decided to call a manager to get the final word. The manager tells the teen, via phone, that I have to upgrade or I don't get in. I told her I wanted to talk to the manager.

At this point, in my head I'm thinking, "What am I doing? We're wasting time. I should just pay the extra and we can go in. The ticket does say 48 inches or less!" But, the Lord was on me. I knew this was something I had to do. I was INCREDIBLY nervous, but figured I could at least tell the manager the situation. I realized it would be same song, part four, and would probably end the same way, but hey, God was leading, and I was following.

When the manager arrived, I was smiling. It was a kid. A college kid, maybe, if that old. He was young, and at that point I understood what the Lord was teaching me, to just speak up and share my side of the story. I had the kids wait away from the chat because I had NO IDEA what was about to transpire. *grin*

I told him I knew the 48 inches rule, but I had been using these passes all summer. He told me that was the employee's mistake, and it shouldn't have happened. I told him (respectfully) that it wasn't my fault that the staff didn't do their jobs. I told him that I had brought the kids because of the $10 cost, and that I wouldn't have done it otherwise. He asked for my season pass and they did something or other on the computer inside the little office. He came out of the office with the sheet and SHOWED ME the 48 inches rule on the pass. I told him I wasn't arguing that point. I told him I had read that, but since height hadn't been an issue all summer, I figured it was an age thing more than a height thing. The guy went back in the office, came out, and said that I HAD to pay the upgrade price, and that was the BEST he could do, or he could refund my money.

I stood there. I waited on God. I had no idea what to do. I knew I had 3 kids waiting for me, and I couldn't walk away. Then He told me what to say.

I said, "I don't think that's the best you can do." At that point, he went back in the office to the computer. Then he came back out.

He said that he COULD have my pass revoked and I could be kept from the park indefinitely, but he didn't want to do that. (Don't know if that's true, but I didn't really factor that into what he was saying. He was trying to get me to go away.) He said that he would compromise with me. He said he would give me the upgrade at the twilight price for two of them, and he would let one in for the $10 pass. I stood there, God told me to take it, so I did. He called down and told the workers at the entrance gate to let us in on one of the $10 passes. He went on to say from now on the $10 passes wouldn't work, and I told him that was fine. (Sidenote, when we did go through the gates, the employees that sent us away were annoyed that one of the kids got in on a pass. *grin*)

In a way, it was weird, as I became one of the annoying customers that I used to deal with when I was a fast food employee. On the other hand, speaking up to the manager made a difference. I went from having to pay FULL price for the three kids, to an upgrade at a reduced price for two out of the three. In the past, I would have just quietly paid the difference and moved on. Speaking up saved me money! *grin*

I don't know what else the Lord has in store for me in using my voice. I think this is just the beginning of things to come. On one hand, that is cool, and on the other hand, I hate drama, so I need to keep praying over this part of my life. Today may seem little to you, but trust me, for me it was heart-pounding and a stretch out of my comfort zone. *grin*

I had two thoughts though, as I walked away from the ticket counter. My Mom woulda been proud of me if she had seen it! *grin* Since Mom would have been proud, my next thought was, "God, I know you're proud too!"