Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Discipleship and Tupperware

In 1945 Earl Tupper developed a set of unique plastic containers for household use. What made his products successful was it had the ability to be airtight, thereby keeping food fresh longer.

However the secret to Tupperware’s success lay in its direct selling strategy which is today known as the “Tupperware Party”. From its inception the strategy was a winner.

By the 1950’s Tupperware exploded into a major force and began to spread first in the United States, then to Europe and eventually to the rest of the world. Today there are approximately 1.9 million direct sellers of Tupperware.

I hope you do not misunderstand my point here. I am in no way reducing the spread of the Gospel to a Tupperware deal. But there is a principle that Tupperware has used that we can learn from. And it is this: they never veiled the fact that you were being invited to a Tupperware Party.

As I have pointed out in my recent blog: Discipleship and Fire Hydrants we should avoid overwhelming or overdoing our witness to others, on the other hand we need to make sure people are clear that they are meeting with a Christian and that we represent Jesus.

All relationships are founded on trust. And if discipleship is relationship you want to make sure that you start on the right footing. Imagine being invited to a friend’s house for a party only to later find out that they were going to sell you Tupperware. You will have a hard time trusting that person.

It is better that people say no to you initially while you keep your integrity and trustworthiness. Rather than they saying yes initially only to lose their trust in you and feel manipulated when they find out you have misrepresented yourself.

Worse is when you lose their respect. By veiling who you are and what you represent you may unknowingly convinced them that you are unsure about your faith.

Discipleship is about an internal boldness to show people who we really are without overwhelming and overdoing it. In the end just like Tupperware when people genuinely need the Gospel they will turn to the person they trust to deliver it. Hopefully that person is you.

Simply let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No’; anything beyond this comes from the evil one. Matthew 5:37

See Other Post: Prayer and the Submarine


SteveXiao said...

In the community we live in China, there is a Tupperware direct selling shop. They are doing parties with house wives, that empressed me a lot.
My wife bought a water container from there.
I like the idea Ptr Joey present here.

Junie said...

Hi Joey,

Thanks for replying. I'll inform you of future meetings concerning scholarship for kids in the Phils. My family and I will be going home on July.

Regards to your family. God bless!