TAKE THE CALL By Lori A Alicea

“Phones are ringing off the wall.”

An expression someone my age with an old fashioned landline would say when the telephone was constantly ringing.
Old Fashioned Jake and Crystal
Regardless of how the telephone has evolved technically…

Regardless of how we communicate with one another…


Telephones are still “ringing off the wall”.

 Moms are calling.
Dads are calling.
Loved ones are calling.
Friends are calling.
Work is calling.
Wrong numbers are calling.
Advertisement is calling.

Just try and have a quiet evening out for two.
You can bet a cell phone will ring somewhere in the restaurant during dinner.

Telephones are “ringing off the wall”.

Telephones are ringing because people have something to say.
From idle “chit chat” to deep heart gushes.

You won’t discover the caller’s reason though until you stop and “take the call”.

But as much as telephones are ringing,
Many of our calls are sent to voicemail,
Because someone wouldn’t “take the call”.

Maybe the call came at an inconvenient time.
Maybe the person on the other end of the phone was busy.
A myriad of reasons or maybes,

Bottom line though is someone wouldn’t “take the call”.

We’ve all been unavailable, or didn’t want to be inconvenienced, including myself.

I think of the calls I have missed that went to voicemail.
I think of those missed calls when the caller just hung up without leaving a message.
Did I miss something important?
Was the caller in need?
Might the caller want to share their heart with me?
Would they still share their heart if I returned the call?
Was there an emergency?

What did I miss?

Missed opportunities happen all the time.

I remember an opportunity “almost missed” when our graduate-school bound son was going camping in the wilderness and trying to get an urgent message to him before he left regarding the recent dental school waiting list he was placed on, yet miffed at me (imagine that), he wasn’t “taking the call”.

Reluctant to take an attitude, I did leave a voicemail message strongly encouraging him to contact the dental school and tell them of his weeklong camping plans and possible unavailable phone service, asking them with committed intentions to the school, to hold his place on the waiting list in case a dental seat became available during his absence.

Interestingly, a week later our son showed up at our house to celebrate the dental school voicemail message announcing the seat they were holding for him upon his return.

“A huge career missed-opportunity” diverted.

Our son forever glad that he “took the call” from me and acted upon it, even if through voicemail.
Jake as a baby on phoneYears ago before cellphones and caller id, and while taking an early call one morning with a friend, someone kept repeatedly trying to get through, yet not wanting to be rude, I wouldn’t put the current caller on hold to take it.

Beep, beep, beep…incoming call…

For over an hour, somebody persistently kept trying to reach me, yet I allowed my current conversation to continue…sending the second caller to voicemail.

Beep, beep, beep…incoming call

Terribly sad to realize my heartbroken mother was desperately trying to reach me that morning with the incomprehensible news that my sister had passed away.

My mother needed me but I failed to “take the call”.
So many calls are trying to reach us.

You wonder the missed and important news we were meant to hear,
Yet, we fail to “take the call”.

I’m so glad I “take the call” from the many phone calls of my daughter, who brightens my day when she just wants to “catch up” from yesterday’s conversation with her mother.
candace as baby on phone

Sure love when the grandkids call their Gaga, even though they’ll ask for their Papa the minute they hear my voice.

We’ll talk forever about nothing, and I never hang up until they’re ready.

When the caller-id lets me know my mother, who resides at the nursing home, is trying to get through, I faithfully answer her calls no matter what I’m in the middle of, as her conversations with me are a sweet-dose of encouragement. Almost eighty years old, I want to speak with mom whenever I can, for as long as I can.
2018 mothers day brunch 11I would sure give anything to “take the call” from my sister ringing me long distance from her pre-paid phone card, even though she always had just two minutes left to chat.  There aren’t enough pre-paid minutes for all that I wish I could say to my crazy sister who passed away long ago, yet painfully seems like yesterday.
belindaEven though it was always me dialing dad’s number, I truly appreciated that he never failed to “take the call” and share a moment with me over the phone, usually when I was passing the time while driving.

Dad passed away a few Christmas’ ago, and what a gift it’d be to hear his voice again, because every now and then a girl just needs to talk to her father.
dad and cookiesI wonder how many times I didn’t “take the call” when God was dialing my number.

He is patient.  He is relentless.
He will hit re-dial until the telephone “rings off the wall”.
He will call until I answer.
He can wait.
He has all of eternity to wait.

I know when He calls.
You know when He is calling you too.

My sheep hear my voice;
and I know them, and they follow me. John 10:27 KJV

Our Heavenly Dad longs to speak with his children.
Our Heavenly Dad has so much to say.
He knows our deepest secrets.
He feels our pain.
He wants to talk about our dreams,
Encourage us in our hopes;
Encourage us in our callings.

God wants to share His heart.
God wants to know our heart.

God desires to talk to me.
He desires to talk to you.

God wants us to “take the call” and be ready to listen as young Samuel did,

The Lord came and stood there,
calling as at the other times,
“Samuel! Samuel!”
Then Samuel said,
“Speak, for your servant is listening.”
1 Samuel 3:10 NIV

As a child, I remember singing the old church hymn about Jesus calling us,

Softly and Tenderly
By Will Lamartine Thompson

Softly and Tenderly,
Jesus is calling,
calling for you
and for me….

Jesus is calling.
Loved ones are calling.
Important opportunities are calling.

“Take the call”….because…

Grandchildren grow up way too fast… “take the call”.
You can’t get back today… “take the call”.
Opportunities won’t always be there… “take the call”.
Your spouse wants to hear your voice… “take the call”.
Your grown child wants to hear about your day… “take the call”.
Somebody needs your help and won’t call back if you don’t “take the call”.  

Someone might grow weary and stop calling because you consistently fail to “take the call”.

Parents won’t live forever… “take the call”.
We won’t live forever… “take the call”.

Somebody wants to share their heart…
Don’t miss what they have to say…
“Take the call”.

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Author Lori A Alicea and her beloved husband David of 29 years thank you for sharing a moment of your day with them at Apples of Gold Encouragement. It is their desire you experience their heart for family, love, encouragement and God through the words God has put on Lori’s heart to write. They are hopeful you discover a few treasures of encouragement, realizing we all share common threads in our lives. Be blessed in your day.

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