How I Handle Unsolicited Phone Calls…”Hello, You’ve Reached the Prayer Line.”
“Hello, I’m calling with information about your order.” The woman’s voice on the other end of the phone was barely audible. I turned up the volume to better hear her and pressed my ear into the earpiece.
We talked for a few moments and then as I was getting ready to hang up, I hesitated. What if she were one of my children? I asked myself. How would I want this call to end?
“May I pray for you?” I offered. Then having her consent, my prayer went something like this:
“Dear Heavenly Father, I’m praying for this young woman like I would pray for my own daughter. She needs a better job. Would you please direct her to her dream job, and even if the application requirements are beyond what she currently possess, would you give her favor? Would you place her in a job where she can be trained and where she will be valued? Will you please provide her with a healthy environment where she works with people who are kind and ethical? Father I know that You’ve heard this prayer. I know that you love this young woman. So, I thank you in advance. In Jesus’ Name I pray, amen.”
The young woman’s voice was soft and tearful now. I could hear emotion in her words. She thanked me and she thanked me again when we finally hung up.
I admit, I haven’t always been as intentional during phone calls with sales people and with crooks. (About phone calls with crooks…I’ll tell you all about it in a day or two.)
Sometimes, I tire of phone calls from solicitors and scammers. It’s annoying. It’s frustrating that they call my phone. I get one or three of those types of calls most days.
That conversation with the sales lady inspired me. Her openness to what I had to say and her appreciation for the words that I prayed…all of that changed the way that I view calls from sales people today.
Why bother? You might ask. Because the person on the other end of the phone is someone’s son or someone’s daughter. I think about that when I see homeless people and when I read articles in the newspaper about another young person in prison. And I think about that when I get phone calls from strangers, asking for money, or trying to give me something that’s supposedly free.
Not too long ago, I picked up the ringing phone and held the receiver to my ear. “Hello, you have been selected for a free trip of your choice to one of our world class resorts.” These were her opening lines, and for the next three minutes the woman on the other end spoke so fast that my mind could barely keep up with her.
When finally she took a breath, I interrupted her memorized pitch. “Honey,” I said. “Can I ask you a question?”
She was obviously not used to questions in this setting. Momentarily, she hesitated and said, “Oh, okay.”
“Do you need prayer?”
“You called my house and this is the number for prayer. Can I pray for you about anything…”
This is how I roll.
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