Last week, as I routinely called the 80-over potential REAL candidates, I found myself repeating the same lines and asking everyone the same question, just phrased differently. My purpose in calling them was to put a voice to a name and to put a name to a programme. At the same time I also wanted to acquaint myself with more young people.
Most of them responded in the same manner; they confirmed their contact information and acknowledged that they would be awaiting my email before they respond from there. On a side note, I was reminded of the massive responsibility that a preacher has and how crucial it is to exercise his influence well. People KNOW and REMEMBER who you are once you go on stage and your public profile increases significantly whether you realise it or not.
When I met with my first and only “I am not interested” response, it caught me offguard. I simply, like a professional telemarketer, responded with a polite “thank you” and “maybe another time then”. When I put down the phone, I still hadn’t realise that with every new phone call made, I am starting to miss the whole point of calling in the first place.
CX snapped me into place. She had overheard my conversation and asked me why I didn’t ask the person why he wasn’t keen on REAL. “Maybe he backslided? Maybe something happened? Maybe he needs someone to talk to him?” I sobered immediately and realised that I should have been more pastoral in my approach instead of being just professional and polite.
It was a good nudge on the purpose of ministry. It’s been a week since and this anecdote still lingers in my head. May we never forget that it’s always about ministering to people and not about the task to be completed.
P/S – Yes, I am attempting to revive this blog by writing more regularly.