A Big-picture Perspective

Today, I would like to introduce you to my fellow contact center employee, Becky. I spoke with her recently and our conversation was such a source of encouragement to me, I wanted to share it with you.

Becky is going through a difficult time right now. Her husband has survived cancer twice, but the doctors have found another spot on his lung. Scared that the cancer has returned, she described her feelings to me.

“I remember walking around the office and thinking ‘Does anyone know that my world has collapsed today? Does anyone even care?’”

As always, God gave her hope in the midst of her sorrow. As our conversation continued, she explained how this experience has helped her show grace to the sponsors she speaks with each day.

“I never know what the person on the other side of the phone is going through. I try to remember how I felt during that time and be sensitive to the person’s struggles that I am speaking with — even if I don’t know what they are.”

I was so inspired by Becky’s strength and hope leaving work that day.

A young child holds hand to headLater that week, I brought up this topic in a meeting and everyone present agreed — when we speak with an upset caller, it is rarely due to the reason the person called about, but usually because of a struggle in that person’s life.
Because of this, one of the representatives on my team prays before taking every call. Many go above and beyond; I know one co-worker who even looked up the right bus route for a sponsor who was lost.

How many times do I speak or act without thinking of the other person I’m interacting with? How many rash and hurtful decisions have I made? Not only do I, working in the contact center, need to be sensitive to the struggles you are going through, but also as a sponsor I must be sensitive to my sponsored children’s struggles.

I don’t want to walk on eggshells all the time, but I also want to be considerate and compassionate to those in my life.

Do you have suggestions for being intentionally considerate of your sponsored child or for those you do life with?

10 Comments |Add a comment

  1. Linda Schoonyoung September 1, 2010

    This is SO true! If only we knew the impact we have on the people we talk to everyday. We, at compassion are in the ministry, to uplift the name of Jesus and to reach our hand out as if it were His hand. Try to take every opportunity you have to show compassion and share the love of Jesus…in word and in action.

  2. Kim Edge August 31, 2010

    May God’s peace, love and healing be upon Becky and her husband.

    As an orphan with an anxiety disorder, I feel desperate to hear that my orphan sponsor child is receiving the family and individual gifts I send her. She will be graduating from the program next year and I am doing all I can to get as much money as I can afford to her and her grandparents before time runs out. It can take six to eight months to hear that they have indeed gotten the cash and what they have done with it. So far I have always gotten word from them eventually but the worry about corruption in overseas governments is real. I do believe Compassion is ethical, but how I wish the communication with my child and her family was faster and more clear. This is a frustration with poverty, for those of us trying to help…God give you patience with those of us who are worriers!

  3. Gabriel August 31, 2010

    How can I become a better sponsor

    1. Alexine September 2, 2010

      I like what Paul Clutterbuck said. We can pray before we write, seek God’s wisdom about the children. Also, write routinely and express your encouragement, hope, faith, love of Christ and interest in their lives and well being. I tell my boys that I hope they got a chance to play, laugh, and get some exercise with their friends. Also I tell them I pray for God to always help them and direct them and to bless their parents and siblings.

  4. Paul Clutterbuck August 31, 2010

    Whenever I write to my sponsored children, I always ask the Lord to give me the words to say to them – even when I’m sending by snail mail and know that it will be months before they receive it. Without doing that, I would be completely clueless as to what I should say to them.

    I don’t know my children’s circumstances anywhere near completely, but God knows everything, and He cares about it far more than I ever could. Whenever I’m reviewing my prayer list for the children, I ask the Lord what points He wants me to focus on, and how to word those requests. “If we pray anything according to His will, He hears us, and we know that we have whatever we ask of Him.” (1 John 5:16)

    It might seem like circular reasoning to ask God how we should pray to Him, but it’s how God wants us to approach Him, acknowledging that He is God and we are not. Prayer doesn’t tell God anything He doesn’t already know, but it is good for us. He always knows the children’s needs before we ask Him, but He nonetheless wants us to bring them before Him, because that increases our faith, glorifies Him, and helps us to remember our dependence on Him. It also makes conscious to us the needs of those for whom we pray, so that we can consider their interests ahead of our own. I don’t know about anyone else here, but if I don’t make my children’s needs a conscious part of my everyday life, I can end up making quite selfish choices. Starting the day with prayer keeps me in an attitude of prayer for the rest of the day, and I’m much less likely to make wrong choices because of that.

  5. Anna Pancake August 31, 2010

    I just spoke with a lady named Becky today in the call center, she was fantastic! If it was the same Becky, please tell her I am praying for her, as my husband also has Cancer and I know exactly how she feels. Some days it does feel like the whole world has fallen in on me. By the grace of God we are making it, one day at a time.

  6. Mike Stephens August 31, 2010

    I agree, if we consider ourselves on one giant soccer team trying to score a goal and win the game we somewhat know how strong we are as a player and others on our team. so we can make a judgement on how well others are doing by how they are playing b/c we have seen them play before. but a close friend of mine told me once he said basically, “Mike if it takes all the effort in the world for this man who has been mistreated his whole life not to kick this old alley cat as it walks by…God sees that!” I always have appreciated the times in my life someone says in my face some bible verse or biblical truth so true and wonderful it almost seems too good to be true and the fact that they blast me with it can’t even bring out how AWESOME the truth really is! One example maybe I Peter 5:7 “Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for YOU!!!!!!” or “By his wounds YOU are HEALED!!!!!!” I Peter 2:24 I especially wouldn’t get tired if I called Compassion and some lady or guy shouted popping by eardrums instead of hello goodmorning etc. but “BY HIS WOUNDS YOU ARE HEALED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” I am sure some people might complain about the loudness being a little over the top, but I wouldn’t mind at ALL 😉 But I assume being at the contact center is probably like being a soccer referee or weatherman it is hard to please everyone. I am thankful for the contact center’s work!

  7. Mary Choi August 31, 2010

    I try to assume that everyone is doing the best that they can at that moment. Their best might not be the same as my best but that might be all they know. It’s hard to remind myself of this, especially with my family, but it’s better than living life with a chip on my shoulder.

    1. Alexine September 2, 2010

      I like how you said this Mary Choi. I agree! I am going to print and post your wise words on my wall. Thanks!! Alexine

  8. Bernadette Mitchell August 31, 2010

    I remember James 1:19 which states “Know this, my beloved brothers(sisters). Every man(woman) must be swift about hearing, slow about speaking, slow about wrath” which allows us time to listen to the caller and discern the tone of their voice and the words they speak. I try to answer my calls with a smile in my voice and even if I can’t help them, I ensure I am referring them to the appropriate person that can help.

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