On Sunday, June 11, 1989, Kraft Company ran a sweepstakes advertisement in newspapers in Chicago and Houston. The ad carried a picture of half a minivan. Packages of Kraft Singles American Cheese contained game pieces that also had pictures of half a minivan. If a lucky customer found a game piece that correctly matched the newspaper ad, the customer won a new minivan. Other prizes included bicycles, skateboards and 8,000 packages of cheese. The odds against winning the van were designed to be 15.2 million to one.
The following day Kraft discovered that a printing error had drastically improved the chances of winning. At least one hundred people had winning pieces for the van. It was a public relations nightmare. Kraft considered pulling the packages off the shelves and canceling the promotion. However, they finally decided to offer two hundred fifty dollars to anyone with a winning piece for the minivan and just simply admit, with an apology, their mistake. Later on a drawing would be held that year, not for one but for four minivans.
The day after the promotion was canceled two angry customers filed two separate lawsuits demanding the minivans be given to everyone with a winning piece. One customer even insisted, â€œI want my minivan! I bought their cheese like they said, and I won.â€ What an attitude! To listen to some of these customers you would think they had worked long and hard for these prizes. They seemed to believe that they were entitled â€“ that they deserved, that they were owed â€“ these prizes. But think for a moment. Maybe that sounds reasonable â€“ maybe it doesnâ€™t. I do know that itâ€™s easy to assume that we deserve the gifts we receive.
Isn’t it interesting…
When we take God’s gifts for granted.
We then begin to feel entitled.
We then start demanding.
You’ve seen them. They make demands of their spouses, family, and friends. They don’t have to put up with an inconvenience. They don’t have to wait their turn. They don’t have to be put out. They don’t have to accept defeat. No. They will throw a tantrum, cuss somebody out, manipulate behind others backs or do whatever it takes to get their way.
Meanwhile, the life of gratitude is quite different.
This is what I want to practice:
- I want to daily praise and thank God for what he has done in my life.
- I want to receive every good thing as a gift from God.
- I want to develop the habit of expressing gratitude to others.