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....