The Phone Call
A few weeks ago I received a phone call. It was from out of state, but I am used to that, since I minister all over the place. What was interesting was what transpired.
I answered as I normally do while I am multi-tasking and working at other things at the same time.
“Hello, this is Edie.”
The voice at the other end said, “Eddie?”
I said, “No. This is Edie. Can I help you?” By now, I thought he was a Craigslist bunny-buyer, or maybe he wanted some chickens. They always get my name wrong.
He said he was looking for Eddie, and was this (my phone number). I said, “Yes, but there is no Eddie here.” Finding it humorous, I said, “But my name is Edie. It’s CLOSE!” I always try to find the humor, even when someone is obviously wasting my time.
He explained that he was looking for someone, he was sure that it was at this number. We went through the, “Are you SURE this isn’t (the other number)?”
I said, “No. I’m sure.” He apologized and hung up.
Two minutes later, the phone rang again. It was the same phone number.
I answered, knowing it was him, but still trying to be professional, “Hello, this is Edie.”
He said, “I’m sorry. I’m still trying to reach Eddie.”
He laughed, I laughed, he explained himself again for a moment, as most “wrong numbers” do. We chatted again briefly and hung up.
Meanwhile, my husband, who was in the kitchen near by, was listening to this conversation and was having fits. Darryl was motioning and telling me not to share information with him, he was probably a scammer, that is how they operate!
“They say they dial a “wrong number” and meanwhile they pump you for information to scam you. That is exactly what they did to my relative….” He went on to tell me the story, complete with all of its details, indicting this presumed scammer to be the villain that he obviously was.
So, fearing I actually had done our family ill, I looked this caller up online at that number in that city. There were no reports of scams from that number, the phone number was from the area he said he was from and it was a landline – incredibly, I didn’t think people used those anymore – and he seemed totally safe to me. Darryl said, even so, you shouldn’t be giving out your personal information to people over the phone. You never know.
So, having been duly warned, and thoroughly chastised, I agreed to not give out personal information over the phone to any more strange callers that say they have a “wrong number”.
Today, the phone rang again, another out of state number. The thought flitted across my consciousness that it might be the little gal I was mentoring out of state, but not really paying attention, I answered the same way…”Hello, this is Edie.”
There was nothing for a few seconds, and then a voice said, “Edie. I’m looking for Eddie. I’ve done it again, haven’t I? You’re the same person I talked to a few weeks ago. I mis-dialed the number again. Is your number (my phone number)?”
I said, “Yes, that’s my number. But there is no Eddie here. My name is Edie.”
Suddenly, I remembered what I had told Darryl! I had promised not to give out personal information anymore to strangers that called from a “wrong number”! Oh my gosh, what was I going to do? It was the same man!
Convinced now that he truly WAS a scammer (obviously, why would he call back a second time!), I zipped my lips. Not only was I NOT giving out personal information, He couldn’t even see me nodding my head! I recognized him, caught him in the act, and was getting him off my phone, as quickly as possible…but as nicely as possible, in the quote-end-quote, “Christian Way”.
I sat, nodding my head, saying nothing, as he repeatedly talked about the phone number, and that he was trying to reach Eddie. “You know,” he said, “I wear glasses. It seems that might be an eight, and I have been dialing a six.”
Having had enough, tired of holding my tongue and nodding, and fearing I might REALLY give out some pertinent information accidentally by the slip of the tongue and cause us bodily, financial and physical harm, I said, “Yes, that’s right. Well, you have a nice day, and God Bless You!”
You have seen in the Christian end-times movies how one person makes half of the sign of the fish symbol, and another Christian comes along and makes the other half? You know, the “secret code” of the Christian in the end-times? We’re not really allowed to say that we’re Christians, but we somehow still have to let each other KNOW that we’re Christians?
Not realizing that was what I had done, he said, “You know we have a Christian outfit up here ourselves.”
I paused for a moment, and thought. Well, now, that’s a horse of a different color, isn’t it? He’s a Christian. I am a Christian. Surely we can talk, now, right?
He continued to tell me a little bit about what they did “up there” at their encampment in the mountains. It sounded so intriguing! Darryl and I had tried to make our way up to the mountains this summer, but got caught up in the demands of jobs and ministries, farms and books and obligations.
But truly, that was all it took, one statement from one of the brethren to another, making the sign of the fish. We were off, chatting away, asking questions and filling each other in on the gaps. Two relatives that were talking to each other for the first time ever at a family reunion!
Once I informed him that Darryl and I are Kingdom Promoters Ministry we were deep into conversation. He asked me a question about writing books and told me that he had booklets he wanted to get into print. I talked to him about my husband being the Artistic Director of the Woodlands Symphony, and don’t you know, he lives in the Woodlands half the year? He knows people that my husband plays with in his band. His entire staff are pastors and Christians. He has an annual music festival on the grounds of his camp up in the mountains. I talked to him about my experience of having lived in the mountains outside Denver for twelve years. It was a glorious connection, and a reconnection in the spirit realm.
We ended the call with me sending his admin some information about our free Author Seminar. He said he might not see it for six weeks, as they have zero-connectivity up there, and didn’t want any! He said he would be by to meet us in person, soon.
The last thing I remember saying to him, other than goodbye, was that ANY TIME that God wants us to pay attention to something, He says it TWICE. Jesus said, “…verily, verily…” meaning, “You’d BETTER pay attention!” The number two is the “second witness”, and means “it shall surely come to pass”…
God had this gentleman call us at this “wrong number” TWICE to make sure we got connected.
I refuse to ignore it.
Here is a, “BUT GOD” Selah moment. ONLY God could connect two people, many states apart, using a “wrong number” as a ruse, with both parties standing to gain something from the connection. A true “GOD CONNECTION” as I define it is a “WIN-WIN-WIN” – You Win, I Win, and God Wins!!!
Had I not “blessed” him, we might not have connected at all. Of course, God would have had him call back a third time, and conceivably a fourth…
Fortunately, it wasn’t necessary. Jesus made a way.