When it comes to technology gone too far, we all have our pet peeves. Mine is “voice mail.” For those of you who haven’t encountered this electronic marvel, think of it as an answering machine with half a brain. You dial your bank, for example, and a machine with an “Our Miss Brooks” voice walks you through a variety of options until you eventually land on something the bank wanted you to choose all along.
As I said, I’m not a voice mail fan, but I was taught to look for the brighter side in things I don’t like. Thus the concept of Voice Mail Evangelism (VME).
The key to an effective VME program is to make it obvious which option the caller should choose. So when the caller rings you up, he hears something like this: “Hi. Would you like to spend eternity in hell? Press 1. Are you interested in being annihilated at death? Press 2. If you are interested in other options, press 3.”
Unless things are worse than I thought, most people would choose the third option, and when they do, voice mail explains the plan of salvation. When it’s decision time, VME once again uses the “obvious choice” method: If you would like a swift poke in the eye, press 1. If you want your children to hate you for the rest of your life, press 2. If you would like to convert to Christianity, press 3.
By the end of the call, I’ve got the callers choosing whether they want to serve on our Christian education board or lead a Bible study. (Option #3 was “work in the nursery.”)
There’s one bug in the system, though. It’s a problem that plagues all evangelistically minded folks: How to keep the prospect from hanging up. Any ideas?

Times do change. The collapse of ...

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