Wednesday, May 25, 2011

I Love Collection Calls!

I never dreamed I would be in this position. Our business of 30 years has been adversely affected by the recession just like so many others. Since its our sole source of income our personal finances have been impacted also. I have a whole new understanding for those who have to endure the relentless pursuit of bill collectors! The calls came even on Mother's Day...so sad.
Having said that, it has also been a time of growth for me (for Bob too, but he needs to write his own blog!). In fact, as I shared my experiences with close friends they said it was information others needed to have and so my blog was born! When the calls first started they embarrassed me and made me angry. How dare these people infringe upon my personal time! But God started working on me and helped me to understand that a credit card is basically a loan that we promise to pay back. If you stop making payments and they start calling you it doesn't make THEM the bad guy. The fact is, a promise has been broken and the responsibility lies with me. The first time I articulated that thought to a collector they were blown away! They shared that they are cussed out or avoided all day long but no one ever owns up to their responsibility.
The more I talked to these people the more I had compassion for the job they have to do. I now go out of my way to be polite and apologetic. I never make a promise I don't think I can keep and I let them know that. I can't tell you how often the collector turns out to be a Christan! I don't know if a lot of Christians do this for a living or if the Lord has just arranged for the Christians to be the ones who call me. Time and time again I have had them say "I'll be praying for you", or "Don't lose hope, God has a plan." Now keep in mind, I don't lead with the information that I'm a Christian!
One in particular that touched my heart was confirming my information at the end of the call and when I repeated back my email address, Iteach4Him@aol.com, he said "THE Him?" When I said yes, he replied that He just KNEW I was a Christian! Then he said God had a word for me and proceeded to rattle off the most profound and encouraging prophesy for me! I couldn't get my journal fast enough to write it all down! At the end I asked him if there was anything I could be praying for him and he told me his wife had just been diagnosed with breast cancer. I assured him that I would be praying and I would have my friends pray too. All of this from a collection call. Another time I could just hear the weariness in the woman's voice and I told her how much I appreciated the way she did her job and that it must be very difficult to do all day. She just poured out her heart to me and I was able to encourage her in the Lord.
So the dreaded collection call has now become a ministry break in the day and I'm learning to love each one who calls me. As Christians, we're called to do all things as unto the Lord. I believe that includes handling collection calls with love and compassion. It sure has made my life easier....

2 comments:

  1. Yes yes yes! Real Christian responses to real problems facing us today. I am encouraged! Do these things happen to those who pursue righteousness- yes! Unfortunately they do and we need a roll model on how to bear this burden and at the same time glorify the Lord! Thank you Patty for being transparent and real in this experience. I can always count in you to tell it the way it is and show me how to use it for the glory of God

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  2. Praise God Patty that He helped you to understand the truth about debt and how that changed your attitude. Isn't God marvelous in how He turned about something that was hard for both you and the collectors and turned it into a ministry, one that encourages and blesses the callers and you too. What a blessing you are. Thank you for your transparency and openness. There are so many folks going through difficult times these days, I'm sure it will be a big encouragement to them.

    Miss CBS this summer and look forward to this fall with a study in John.

    Praying that you and Bob during this difficult time with confidence in God provision for you and His perfect will and plan being worked out on people submitted to Him.

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