“Are you in charge?”

I was recently approached by a customer who asked a question I hear regularly.

“Are you in charge?” she asked.

Having been in retail management at a secular department store for a number of years, I must admit when asked that question or something similar, my automatic response is to brace for a complaint that is forthcoming.

“Yes ma’am, I’m the store manager.”

She then told me that the prior week she was having one of those ho-hum days, one of those days where you just don’t know if you can go on. She entered our Clinton store as we were having our devotions.

It was God’s timing. As she left that day, she told herself that she can get through. She went on to say that she loves coming to our store because it’s so peaceful. In fact, she told our head cashier that she wished we sold groceries so she could get everything she needs here.

I thanked her for her comments and shared with her that we often pray for people to sense a difference (the Holy Spirit difference) from the time they step foot onto our parking lot. We want to be a different experience than they are used to getting elsewhere.

After she left, I began to reflect on the encounter I had just had.  “Are you in charge?” resonated in my head and my auto-response thinking of “oh boy, here it comes.”

It was then that God pointed out to me that in my brief position as store manager with KARM Stores, I’ve been approached by numerous customers who asked if I was in charge, or if I am the manager and in the vast majority of these instances, it has been a compliment that was shared with me and not a complaint.

So today, not only did I learn how we made an impact on a customer, she also was used to impact me.  Now I will look forward to the question I once dreaded to hear, “Are you in charge?”


Mark S.

Retail Team

KARM Stores in Clinton

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